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Tangents and the Times throwdown at Bruar Falls with Alex Bleeker and the Freaks, La Big Vic, Sweet Bulbs, 8
The Babies (sans Cassie), Grass Widow, Ovens, Web Dating, Red Romans at Monster Island Basement, 8ish
Teenage Fanclub, The Clean, Radar Brothers at Bowery Ballroom, 8
Forgetters, Shellshag at Death by Audio, 8ish
Juliana & Evan (Hatfield & Dando), The Shining Twins at Mercury Lounge, 9:30 (also Thursday with Candles)
The Great Valley, Procedure Club, DDIILLIIAANN, In Buenos Aires, Philip Seymour Hoffman at Shea Stadium, 8ish
Autre Ne Veut, Zambri at Cameo Gallery, 8ish
Belle & Sebastian, Teenage Fanclub at Williamsburg Waterfront, 7ish
Human Resources, Gunfight, I’m Turning Into, Slow Animal, Easter Vomit at Don Pedro, 8ish
Mirah ( all-star band), Tami Hart, “Girls to the Front: The True Story of the Riot-Grrl Revolution” Book Release Party at Bruar Falls, 8ish
Casiokids, Brahms, Bikini, VonChina at Glasslands, 8ish
GAYNGS, Glasser at Music Hall of Williamsburg, 8
Pic and Review by David Chiu
Beach House has come a long way in the three years since I first discovered the Baltimore indie pop duo. At the time, the band had a self-titled first album on Carpark Records and was opening for the Clientele. Now, they’ve released two more albums, including their most recent effort Teen Dream (Sub Pop), attracted major press attention and built a considerable following.
The group’s popularity was on full display last night when singer/keyboardist Victoria Legrand and guitarist Alex Scally played to a packed house at Webster Hall.
Accompanied by a drummer, Beach House performed ethereal-sounding music that was characterized by slow tempos, waltz-like rhythms, and dreamy melodies that evoke early 20th century pop music. Clearly this wasn’t music to dance or rock out to—more like sway slowly to. Beach House’s music nevertheless divinely draws you in with every song, whether it’s the charming pop of “Lover of Mine,” the hypnotic “Gila” or the romantic-sounding “Astronaut.”
While the intimate elements of the group’s style were present at the show, the music sounded more bold live than on record. The addition of the drummer was one major factor, but there was also an intensity during the show that helped the band to soar. Scally, who usually plays his guitar lines in a gentle manner, unleashed some stinging riffs during a performance of the excellent “Master of None.” He was matched by Legrand’s singing– her hair flowing wildly over her face as if she was possessed by the music.
The stage was decorated with a few large glittery diamond-shaped objects that were hung on the ceiling and mounted on poles, adding to the idea that Beach House’s exquisite music is more about the senses than theatrics. It was an evening that conveyed something pure and mystical.
In contrast to Beach House’s music, opening act Washed Out’s was more rooted in electronic rock and dance grooves– you had no choice but to react physically. Based in Georgia, Washed Out is essentially one man named Ernest Greene. At the beginning of his set, he was onstage by himself programming the music and singing into the mike. Half way into his set, the other band members– a drummer, a bassist and two keyboardists– entered and played with Greene a combination of music that drew from funk and rock.
Micachu & the Shapes, Tanlines at Le Poisson Rouge, 6:30
She & Him, The Chapin Sisters at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish
jj at Knitting Factory, 8ish
Califone, Sonoi at Bell House, 8ish
The Big Pink, A Place to Bury Strangers at Webster Hall, 8ish
Eskimo King (Brian Sullivan of Mouthus), Samara Lubelski, Religious Knives at Zebulon, 9
The Soft Pack, Nodzzz, Beaters at Maxwell’s, 8:30 (and Thursday at Mercury Lounge and Saturday at MHW w/ Male Bonding)
Abe Vigoda, Effi Briest, Cloud Nothings, MINKS at Knitting Factory, 8:30
The xx, jj at Webster Hall, 8
Ryan Moore (drums) w/ Thurston Moore and Daniel Carter at Rose Live Music, 8 (two sets)
Japandroids, Best Coast, Midnight Masses at Bowery Ballroom, 8
DOM, Golden Girls, Buvette at Pianos, 8
Blank Dogs, Wet Dog, Wild Nothing, Further Reductions at Glasslands, 8
Phosphorescent at Maxwell’s, 9:30
The Smith Westerns, Big Troubles, Golden Triangle, Darlings at Market Hotel, 8
Love of Diagrams, Wetdog, Partyline (Alison from Bratmobile), Coasting at Death by Audio, 8
Girls, Dum Dum Girls at Webster Hall, 6 (?)
The Smith Westerns, Male Bonding, So Cow, The Gaming Commission at Mercury Lounge, 7
Dream Diary, Cloud Nothings, Fluffy Lumbers, McDonalds, Free Kisses at Monster Island Basement, 8ish
Dam Funk at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish
Men, Light Asylum at Mercury Lounge, 9:30
The Magnetic Fields at Town Hall, 7:30 (and Thursday and Friday)
Yacht, MNDR at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish
Prudence Teacup, Key Demo, Chris Brokaw (Guitar Trio) at Bruar Falls, 8
The Very Best, Theophilus London at the Museum of Natural History, 9
Woods, Real Estate, Happy Birthday, Wild Nothing at Music Hall of Williamsburg, 8
Tanlines and Maluca and more, Eyebeam Party, 1 am
Drunk Tiger, Darlings, The Sundelles, Total Slacker, Whatever Brains, Big Troubles, Fluffy Lumbers at Bruar Falls at 7
Darlings, The Sundelles, Total Slacker, Whatever Brains, Big Troubles, Fluffy Lumbers at Cake Shop, 7
Casiokids, Spleen United, Banjo Or Freakout, A Classic Education at Pianos, 8ish
Lord Jeff, Truman Peyote, Julie Bryne at Silent Barn, 8
David Daniell & Doug McCombs (and Ryan Sawyer), Alan Licht, Loren Connors, Margarida Garcia, Ben Vida, Koen Holtkamp (from Mountains) at Union Pool, 8
Let’s Wrestle, Casiokids, The Wave Pictures, Banjo Or Freakout at Knitting Factory, 7ish
I don’t think this bee stings. In fact, honeybee’s never sting. They drink nectar out of flowers and then make honey comb and honey with their huge family. What a sweet, sweet image…
Emily Reo sings “Honeybee” and it feels like a movie where you’re sitting in a hazy window, gazing out at a world that is ready for you. The sun is shining and inviting. It’s almost a throwback track, to the 50s. A soundtrack for ironic ambivalence, maybe.
Reo is from Orlando, Florida, and “Honeybee” is off her new album Minha Gatinha, available here. The whole album features fuzzy songs, but they are all different kinds of songs. Some are pop, some are ballads, some feel like memories and some feel like the future. Honeybee is a future track…despite the familiar feeling.
Emily Reo: Honeybee
Dana Jewell, why are you doing this to me? As if gray Friday mornings weren’t strange enough… Wow, the sun literally just came out and my computer screen is now covered in light. I can’t see.
I’m a sucker for lovelorn acoustic songs. It’s just the folkster in me. It’s the Bob Dylan, the Mary Lou Lord, in my bones.
“We’d settle down, put some roots in the ground.”
Isn’t that what we all want? Transient people eventually, too, grow downward and not just outwards.
“Learned to Write a Song” is one of two gems that I now can call my own. Dana just recorded them yesterday, and they are part of an apparent set/album? called “Songs ‘or The Broken Hearted.” I will share the second one, too, eventually. Good morning and welcome to the bright world.
Dana Jewell: Learned to Write a Song
Sam Amidon at Mercury Lounge, 9ish (also Monday w/ Beth Orton at Bell House)
Trouble and Bass, Uproot Andy, Ninjasonik at Studio at Webster Hall, 10ish
Teengirl Fantasy, Stellar Om Source, Lemonade (DJs) at Pianos, 11ish
Big Troubles, Blissed Out, Procedure Club, Dream Diary at Silent Barn, 8ish
Real Estate, Beach Fossils, The Beets, Total Slacker at St. James Church, LES, 8ish
Gordan Gano (Violent Femmes) and others at the Bell House, 11:45 pm
Beach Fossils, Alex Bleeker and the Freaks, Cloud Nothings, Nude Beach at Monster Island Basement, 8ish
Dinosaur Jr. at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish(& Sun. at Music Hall of WBurg and Mon. at Brooklyn Bowl)
Aa, Dinowalrus at Cake Shop, 9ish
Ecstatic Sunshine, Jason Urick, McDonalds at Cake Shop, 8ish
Woods at Monkeytown, 2 shows, 8 and 1030
Clipd Beaks remind me of early Sonic Youth. With their experimental haziness and drones, their slightly strained and sometimes whispered lyrics, they really bring the moodiness. This song, “Blood,” is take from their forthcoming album, To Realize, out January 26 on Lovepump.
The above image is from the video for “Blood,” which is yet to be released. Filmed in Cali, cos that’s where they’re from.
Clipd Beaks: Blood
Last night’s crop of bands at Monster Island Basement were of the “let’s get high and make out” variety. And even though i wasn’t smoking the weed that was so clearly being passed around not just the audience but also band members on stage, i could still feel it, man.
Enough of that.
Monster Island Basement is a great space- it’s a little cavernous and echo-ey and the walls are actually built out of rocks. Solid. It wasn’t even too hot, amazingly. The guy doing sound was really meticulous too- so props to Todd P and that guy for working tirelessly to make un-legit places sound great.
First up was Alex Bleeker (pictured) and the “ever-revolving cast of Freaks.” This guy knows a rock hook if i ever heard one. And Matt Mondanile from Ducktails and Real Estate solo’s like nobodies business. They covered Mountain Man’s “Animal Tracks,” which i saw them perform the night before. Both were awesome. Bleeker’s take on the folky song was very much a “rock and roll saves your soul” type of cover.
Fluffy Lumbers was on next. Last night at MonkeyTown, Sam Franklin played solo but tonight he had his full band. Apparently the band needs a drummer and so Sam filled in himself. It was great to watch a 20 year old kid run his own band from behind the kit. And he did it masterfully, with grace even. When some things went awry, shoulders were shrugged and the band lumbered on. Heh heh. I like the punk edge in Fluffy Lumbers songs… an interesting take on a traditional sound. Franklin’s drumming is fast and like a garage pop headache. He could stand to hit harder– resulting in punch in the face type songs. I’m interested to see the band with Franklin on guitar…
Coasting played their first show ever last night. It was obvious only in the fact that they were so proud and their girlfriends in the front row were, too. The devotion was pretty impressive- one girl who couldn’t have been older than 23 actually tapped a guy on the shoulder and told him to move when he stepped into her view. The band has well crafted pop tunes with specific and interesting guitar work. They have potential.
My feet hurt and I needed to tweet so I went outside and sat on the really nice benches under a tree that are right around the corner at Secret Project Robot. We were right outside the basement window and the sound was actually better from up there. That’s how I experienced High Life, living the High Life in the cool, cool air.
And finally- the girl i’ve been dreaming about for months- Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast. It’s interesting to finally see someone perform after so much hype and thinking and listening on your computer. Unlike Washed Out, Best Coast was actually fun. Her music is still the kind experienced best laid out somewhere, but the fog of sound that surrounds her and all she emits is pretty interesting in a live setting. Oh, and you can’t take your eyes off of her.