The Duchess and Duke: Show Review, Valentine’s (Albany, New York)

    A music venue becomes just a regular bar without music playing, and a place called Valentines seems to fit particularly well when discussing the shade of disappointment that accompanies such a shift, a let down. It seemed that there had to be some kind of reason for traveling by train for nine hours to a state capital to witness an absence. Or perhaps my disregard for past Valentines days simply came back to haunt me. 


    What does come out of disappointment sometimes is unexpected enjoyment.  The acoustically charming The Duchess and Duke, along with Shayde from Toth’s traveling band the Type A Negatives, followed through with a set that filled the absence and drowned out, in a good way, a therapy session taking place at the bar that was still just a bar. Guitar strums, tight harmonies, and songs that were difficult to not sing along with seemed to be the theme of their set. 


    According to those involved, a van and some relationships close to the James Jackson Toth camp were not running as well as they could have been. Things were falling apart in ways I didn’t quite understand, or possibly could understand, but it seemed as long as the people moving along on the tour kept moving along on the tour, all was fine. After a long conversation about music that I enjoy more than most anything these days, with a person involved in that music, I soon realized that I don’t often have long conversations about music I enjoy. Taking long train rides for nothing is sometimes worth it – going off in wrong directions to find a new one.