Smiles at The Bowery Ballroom

October 8th, 2009

The Rural Alberta Advantage – The Bowery Ballroom – October 7, 2009

(Photo: Patrick Leduc)

(Photo: Patrick Leduc)

There is that singular moment where something goes unexpectedly well. You know it when it happens: A joke that flies in a tough crowd, a presentation that clicks in the face of judgment, a first kiss that is as dramatic as it is on the bare floor of an apartment. You smile, you try to hide your smile and then you smile anyway. The Rural Alberta Advantage’s keyboardist, Amy Cole, spent most of Wednesday’s show with this look on her face. She glanced nervously at singer Nils Edenloff and he never looked back. Edenloff was stuck, purposefully, between himself and us.

In all fairness, the band played the set they’ve been touring with for months. “Don’t Haunt This Place” and “Frank, AB” were lodged firmly in the middle. A cover of ABBA’s “S.O.S.” appeared unexpectedly and Cole explained, “Our first show was a cover show and no one came, so now, to be at The Bowery Ballroom….” She kind of trailed off but Edenloff added how lucky he felt to be there with us. Of course, we felt lucky to be there with them. The band closed with its best song, “In the Summertime,” and “Deathbridge in Lethbridge,” the most upbeat. The lyrics echoed out from “Summertime” as Edenloff said the things that make us sway. This was the moment where things went unexpectedly well. And we smiled because we couldn’t help it. —Geoff Nelson