The Sound of Music
Cain Park's Evans Amphitheater, Superior
Avenue and Lee Road, Cleveland Heights
Through July 8
Dido's latest single, "Here With Me," is the bomb -- but you've gotta have a soft spot for English lasses who write dopey pop songs and coat 'em in dub atmospherics and keyboard-generated symphonies. It's worth debating how famous Dido would actually be, had Mr. Eminem not co-opted her pretty lame "Thank You" (a lovey-dovey VH1 moment only a Gwyneth Paltrow movie could embrace) and turned it into his pretty excellent "Stan" (a twisted stalker parable only a mother could -- oh, wait). This is now beside the point. Scores of white zinfandel-sipping ninnies have embraced Dido's breezy, dippy, and relentlessly pleasant soft rock. Folks sing "Thank You," "My Lover's Gone," and (in the event of a bad mood) "Don't Think of Me" in the shower. It's pretty standard, kinda unexciting, and decidedly average. But someone's gotta be our soft-pop princess, and Sarah McLachlan's off eating vegetarian lasagna somewhere. So Dido now represents the VH1 status quo. And emotionally secure, hyper-macho twentysomething indie rockin' males occasionally fall for it. She's joined by Travis, the sensitive Britpop crooners who sent hipster cognoscenti into a tailspin with weepy Smithsish laments like "Why Does It Always Rain on Me?" A little too cool for the Dido crowd, you'd think. Maybe Travis needs the cash. Maybe Eminem forced them on the bill at gunpoint. Or maybe these guys are as entranced with "Here With Me" as the rest of us.