Written by James Dillon
Jul 18, 2008 at 08:00 PM
Image“And we feel so alive”. No other words could better describe the feeling that one gets when going to a Tilly and the Wall show. With both the band and their fans bringing the party every night. But there are a few things one must keep in mind when attending a Tilly show:You will leave covered in sweat and glitter, you probably won’t have a voice left after the show, and you probably be too excited after the show to go home and sleep.

The first act for evening was Elaine Greer, a local singer who writes and sings wonderful folk/pop songs. I had seen her before, when she played the last show to ever take place at the Prolo earlier this year, and she has gotten even better since then. Her songs are pretty simple, but have diverse instrumentation, thanks to Austin Lloyd juggling guitar, accordion, and lap steel. The drummer is quite a sight to see, sometimes standing while playing, sometimes jumping up and down, and sometimes eating a pear while tapping a tambourine.

Once Elaine finished up her set another Houston band took the stage, The Wild Moccasins (who just so happen to share a drummer with Elaine Greer). Good bands are a bit of a rarity in Houston, so it was nice to see two of them playing the same show. The group played catchy pop songs and got the dancing started.

Towards the end of the Wild Moccasins set, the audience starting getting their portion of the party together. Balloons (which I’ll admit to helping inflate), silly string, and a bubble machine were all prepped for the evenings headliner.

As soon as Tilly took the stage, the audience erupted into screams, balloons started flying around, and bubbles filled the the front of the Engine Room. Luckily this time my camera bag remained free from bubble mix. The group played and tapped (as I’m sure you know, they’re that band that has a tap dancer instead of a drummer) their way through their irresistible folk/pop songs. While the new songs actually have drumming, the tapping still stands out, and still doesn’t sound novelty. The drumming is a nice touch, especially when the tap dancer and the drummer had a duel.

Even through all the shenanigans, audience members trying to dance on stage, smoke and glitter, the songs still stand on their own. Tilly is one of those bands that is both incredibly entertaining to see live, and puts out great records worth repeat listens. After playing a set that perfectly blended new and old material the group called it a night. But not before playing an encore consisting of “Fell down the Stairs” and “Nights of the Living Dead”. And after leaving the show I don’t see how anyone could help from feeling “so alive” after a night like that.