There’s nothing wrong with a little theft — when it’s done right, that is. The incomparable Jonathan Lethem, in his recent essay for Harper’s, taught me that. Unlike the second performer last night at TT’s, local acoustic guy Brendan Little, who brought to mind about ten different blasé singer-songwriters when he sang “You ain't living till you died/Once or twice” from the track entitled “Boring,” Mean Creak (also of Boston) borrowed from all the best places during their set. I won’t bore you with names, except that of guitarist Aurore, who generously brought a few goodies to the affair: lovely backing vocals, harmonica parts she once or twice had to lay down over the frenzied outbursts of her band. Two or three of the tracks really stood out. The chorus in “Momentary” had a Rudds-like vibrancy, springing out at us like a page in a child’s pop-up book.
The night’s main attraction, Maria Taylor, had an ample band behind her — at times three guitars-deep — including her bro Macey and sis Kate on bass and keys, respectively. The family proved a good source of banter. Taylor joked about Macey's frustration that the band didn't open a recent gig the way he envisioned they would. As payback, he’d rearranged the setlist so that Maria had to keep asking him which song was next. After about five tracks, Taylor announced that it was the halftime portion of the show. “This is the point where everybody gets a drink, except my brother and sister,” said the frontwoman, striking a parental tone. The trio of Taylors remained on stage to perform what sounded a good deal like a lullabye. As you’d expect, it made for an adorable scene. If you closed your eyes, you could see the two younger siblings in bed, Maria cooing over them in an attempt to lull them asleep.