Live Review: Jakalope at El Corazon 1/28


By Darrell Fortune

The crowd was sparse at best this past Saturday night at El Corazon. I was quite amazed at the low attendance for a band with such great sound and pedigree as Jakalope. Hailing from Vancouver, B.C.; Seattle was the last stop on their West Coast tour that had seen L.A., Portland, and San Francisco. Jakalope would be ending their tour with a home show in Vancouver later in the week.

Jakalope is the creative vehicle for album producer and studio genius Dave “Rave” Ogilvie, who has worked with Skinny Puppy (one time member), Marilyn Manson, David Bowie, Nine Inch Nails, Queen, Queensryche and KMFDM, to name but a few. This tour was in support of their latest CD “Things That Go Jump In The Night”, the bands third CD.

Jakalope has been a bit of a revolving door for band members over the last few years. Perhaps this could be attributed to the fact that it is one of just many projects for Ogilvie. The group’s current lead singer is Chrystal Leigh who replaced former lead vocalist Katie B.

The Seattle show was opened by band Left Spine Down, also from Vancouver, B.C. This band played what they call “cyberpunk,” a mixture of electronica, metal, punk, and drum & bass. The group delivered a fun and entertaining set. They engaged the crowd and both parties seemed to be enjoying the fun.

Lead singer Kaine D3l4y was energetic throughout. His stage presence and with the vocals and stage show transmitting fun and the infectious need to get up and move. Whether it was shining his red spot light around the room, running through the crowd or singing through his bullhorn you couldn’t help but get caught up in his energy and passion. The band was solid and an added attraction to the headliners. This is a band that I would like to see again when they do make it back to Seattle.

When Jakalope hit the stage they immediately drew you into their industrial rock/pop underworld. Lead singer Leigh is an accomplished vocalist with amazing chops. She is comfortable in her role as part seductress and siren but she is all business when it comes to delivering her provocative lyrics and melodies.

Leigh was a show in and unto herself. The band was successful at creating haunting moods for each number, inviting the audience to come with them to a magical and mystical journey.

Ogilvie, for the most part seemed content to stay in the shadows and let his playing speak for itself but would venture up to the microphone or engage in some interplay with Leigh from time to time. The band was tight and in stride, building momentum with each song.

Stalking around the stage and very comfortable in her skin Leigh’s voice and movements were intoxicating. Sometimes sweet, sometimes growling but always clear with what she had to say. It was clearly apparent that she has taken on a leadership role within the group with gusto and was happy to own it. Leigh’s performance was reminiscent of the first time that I saw Berlin and the great Terri Nunn.

The night wasn’t without some technical glitches, which could be blamed on the person running the boards at the venue. Jackalope uses a lot of electronics and sonic ear candy and perhaps he was not prepared to handle some of the complexities a band like Jakalope requires. Even with a microphone malfunction mid song but Leigh was a consummate professional, taking it all in stride and proceeding undaunted.

It was disappointing that El Corazon appeared to drop the ball by properly promoting the show. This is the type of band that deserves a larger audience. It is hard to fathom why there was not a larger crowd this past Saturday. For those not in attendance, a great show was missed by a talented and creative band of seasoned pros that has big time and hits written all over them.

Closing thoughts…

Talking with Chrystal just before they hit the stage I almost felt apologetic for the low turn out. I know it takes quite a bit for bands to cross the border in either direction with all the restrictions and regulations. So, the fact that they came down to play tells me they are dedicated to spreading their music. It wouldn’t have surprised me a bit if they had just asked to refund the tickets to those who were there and then shuffled back up to Vancouver to return another time if at all again. “We’re having fun and this is fun” Chrystal told me.

I have to concur. This is a fun and an amazingly talented band with deep emotional songs that deserve to be heard. I hope they do come back down and play Seattle again. If and when they do you need to be there. I’m glad that I was and I wouldn’t miss them again given the chance.

You can hear the interview that Darrell did with Jakalope on Northwest Convergence Zone right here.

Darrell hosts the Northwest Convergence Zone every Sunday night at 9:00pm and Thursday night at 6:00pm as well as The Big D and KingFish show every Monday night at 6:00pm  on

Not only is he a multi-media journalist, he is also an accomplished musician. He is the founder of SMI and drives the creative look, feel and branding for the publication. His years of writing, arranging, and performing live music in a variety of genres inform his ability to communicate the message and the mechanics of music. Roth’s work on SMI reflects his philosophy that music is the universal language, and builds community. He believes it has the power to unite people of every race, religion, gender, and persuasion.