Needless to say, I wish I would have had my camera with me for this. On Friday night, at downtown club La Zona Rosa, up-and-coming dance pop trio The Lovemakers took the stage to an audience of maybe 30 people. La Zona Rosa’s capacity is over 1000. Headliners Veruca Salt apparently don’t draw the kind of crowds they did in 1995. So, The Lovemakers were left to make the best of the turnout. And, did they ever.
Taking songs from their Interscope debut, Times of Romance, this Oakland-based group of two Americans and one Brit sliced through disco-inspired takes on synth-pop anthems. Co-vocalists Lisa Light and Scott Blonde showdown onstage as one tries to outdo the other. A performance tactic that culminates with them occasionally groping and then finally french-kissing one another.
The Lovemakers poured out tunes like “Is It Alright” and “Shake That Ass” with a wild enthusiasm that made it feel more like an arena show… despite less-than-arena sized numbers. Not even a pair of heckling drunk girls busy screaming could deter the band from moments of greatness. Whether it was Blonde strutting and disrobing with each passing tune, or Light jumping into the empty audience for more intimacy, they never failed to connect and have what looked like fun.
Who knows if they’d do the same show anywhere or anytime, but they did it Friday night. And who knows if they’ll play bigger rooms with bigger crowds, but they deserve to. And for making what could have been a bummer of an evening, I thank them for making it a blast. It was a lot like their Blondie-tinged song “Dance,” which echoes: “Dance, if you want to. Dance, like no one’s around.” How about if 25 other people are around?