Five Foot Nine
Before I ever listened to Five Foot Nine, their height-referenced name made me think of this scene from the classic Chevy Chase comedy, Fletch. Fletch is dreaming that he is the Los Angeles Lakers’ 6th Man.
Now 5’9″ – a far cry from 6’5″ (6’9″ with the afro) – is said to be the average height of adult human males. But I gotta tell ya, Chicago’s Five Foot Nine is hardly average.
On paper they sound kinda like that band you had in college – guy/girl vocals… handclaps… cellos (?!?) – but on their self-titled debut CD they are anything but. This group of veteran musicians combines elements of Wishing Like a Mountain and Thinking Like the Sea-era Poi Dog Pondering with Lulu-like Trip Shakespeare and dashes of Natalie Merchant and Neko Case thrown in to create enjoyable folk-driven pop.