Her: What time’s your show tonight
Me: I don’t know, it’s at a DIY space in Bushwick so I don’t think there’s a schedule. You know, the one that I thought I got bedbugs from last year.
Her: … How’s 39 treating you?
We’d spent the night hopping between venues not knowing who was playing or what to expect. We’d seen some interesting stuff (good and bad), but when we saw Milk Music I knew that we’d seen it. It was crowded, oven-hot, and WAY too late… and yet there’s nothing better than realizing you’re watching one of your new favorite bands – and it’s a band that you didn’t know existed before they started playing.
Finding their album is a challenge, and I haven’t seen them back in town since then, but there’s a lot of buzz – this could be their year if they ever leave the west coast again. Over the summer I would have said the vocals were mixed too low and the music was too far from the mainstream to be popular, but in a world where David Comes to Life is the album of the year anything’s possible. And that’s the world I want to live in.
Nothing much to say – not as good as last year, but probably enjoyable on the whole.
Nothing sums up the Flaming Lips live like this photo, stolen from brooklynvegan:
Yes, I like the Breeders. Yes, Kim was in the Pixies, so she could make armpit noises & I’d probably love it.
Lately, dunno if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been going to a LOT of shows. This one was down my list, not because they’re not a good band, but… well, you know, the heroin, the one hit albums, the new single, etc. We manged to get tickets early enough that we could go to the Friday show though, so why not? Normally I love the BB, but lately with all the smaller venues we’ve been going to I was sure I was going to hate it.
It turns out that they’re not that popular at all. We arrived exactly on time (or at least when I was planning on showing up), in time to watch them change for the headliners, and the place wasn’t that crowded. We got a good spot and Juliet could almost even see.
Their show is really interesting. The interplay between Kim & Kelly (who looks strangely like the more sober of the two these days) is great. Kelly’s almost the mom on stage… “Honey, are you ready to rock?”. In fact, the whole band was responsible for keeping a well lubed Kim on track. Invariably someone in the rhythm section would start the next song, interupting Kim’s drink or monologue when they decided it was time.
I shouldn’t comment on playing the guitars, because my sk1llz only extend to G & F, but the three (!) players in the Breeders could stand to learn to tune themselves. The constant breaks… pass the guitar back to tech, tune, return… slowed the show down considerably and accentuated Kim’s patter (not necessarily a bad things) making the show like being in their living room. Tuning aside, it’s obvious they all have a great musical ability – again, a good show. I wonder why more bands can’t move the drummer up with the rest of the band, is it because they can’t keep together without the constant pounding? It’s certainly not for lack of space, because the Breeders are 5 strong and managed to fit.
Yes, this is just one more thing that I owe J. – Spicy Gumbo.
All week long, all I’m thinking is that I’m going to see the Desaparecidos. For those of you that have been living in a cave, this is a huge deal. The first time we ran into Conor Oberst’s new band, they were opeing for Sorry About Dresden & Curisve at the Knitting Factory last year. At the time they were still working on their first record and we had no idea what to expect. The show was less than good, it really seemed like a one off kind of thing to indulge the parts of Conor that weren’t being fufilled by Bright Eyes.
How things changed when Read Music, Speak Spanish was finally released. Easily one of the best albums I’ve heard in a long time, it’s one of those things that I have to school myself not to listen to every day. I was disappointed to hear that they were opeing for Jimmy Eats World all summer, playing venues that I’d never go to… until I randomly saw on pollstar that they were doing a warm up show at North Six the night before their Roseland gig in the city.
North Six is really the epitome of the new Williamsburgh and we’d never been, so that was going to be a bonus as well. Turns out that it could be one of the best places to see a show in the city – it’s set up very well, probably holds ~500 people and has a good (but really loud) sound system. I liked the bar & the people were really into what was going on.
Rilo Kiley opened, and they were great. Keyboards, yes, but enough guitars to keep me interested. North Six is set up so you can stand at the bar & be close enough to the stage to be engaged, without having chatters bother you (the sound system, again). As their set was finishing I was really worried that J was going to miss the start of the Desaparecidos – it was only 10:30 & I told her to show up @ 11. I didn’t know it, but there was another band playing second.
The Miracle of ’86 kicked my ass. Possibly the best emoish punk I’ve heard live (at least by accident) in a long time. I remember the first time I heard the Old ’97s live, I had no idea that people could have that much fun playing music that I wasn’t prepared for. This was exactly the same thing, he even emotes like Rhett, and I really thought I was seeing the start of something really special, a band that I’d want to see over & over again. AND they were based in Brooklyn. This was a Good show.
The Desaparecidos were, quite honestly, ok. This is a studio band. Conor’s voice just doesn’t work that well live (it does better in Bright Eyes), and he’s not the best guitar player in the world. They’ve replaced a few of the younger members since we saw them last (constant debate during the show about whether the lead player was the same guy much older or not), but still just ok. I’m sure their next will be another of my favorite disks, and I’ll always go see them live, but I wish they had the power & beauty that they manage to pull off in such a raw way on the album.
As for the openers… everything they put out on CD is only OK. Juliet says the first rule of music is that you must rock harder live, this is the first time I’ve run into to such an extent.
Southpaw’s a brand new place, owned by the same guys who own Maxwell’s in Hoboken, and if it draws anywhere near the talent that Maxwell’s gets it’s going to be great having in Brooklyn. From here it’s only 6 blocks away and will still be an easy subway ride from the new place. The acoustics are good, and it’s just the right size. The bar’s set up close to the stage – good for being close to the beer & bad for being close to the ever present socializers. For some reason the only bathroom is out big gym-doors which are right next to the stage. For quiet shows, like Grant last week, that means constant slamming as people come & go. For shows like this that’s not a problem.
Unfortunately, they forgot to adverttise that there were two opening bands, so I was there an hour before I should have been. I really hate it when people do that just to sell more beer. I like getting there at the right time, and I feel tricked when they don’t tell me what’s really going on. Yes, I played right into their hands. Both opening bands were horrible – generic country band started & generic Brooklyn emo band was next – I was ready to give up & go home at around 11 but somehow managed to stick it out. Good choice
From the opener, Lumberlung, to the end of the set there was nothing but pure, fun, rock. The guys looked like they were having lots of fun, and the crowd was really into it. Slobberbone has groupies! How very strange.
I was dragging the next day, but decided to go into town for the next show anyway. I missed the first few songs, but caught enough to see that it was basically a similar set. Evenly distributed through the four albums, including the new one that’ll be out in September. The new songs sound good – much in the same vein as the older stuff. I’m perfectly happy if they just keep writing good songs the same way, at least for another album or two.
No encores on the first night, but Friday they did an incredible cover of Free World. It would be hard to screw that song up, but it made seeing the show twice worth it.
8 women & Connor… that’s Bright Eyes. A rotating orchestra sharing a magnum of Turning Leaf. The entire evening was perfectly summed up by the guy standing next to us, who shouted “Addicted to Love” in between songs. Yes, Connor Oberst is Robert Palmer.
The show itself was good – sometimes I’d really rather they didn’t remind us of all the pseudo-pretentions. I know it’s probably ironic, but the lyrics are such that they could be bad teenage poetry in the wrong light.
We missed all but the last two songs of The Good Life’s opening set. Of course, we didn’t realize that TGL was Tim Kasher, or we would have been there much earlier.
Big weekend for shows….
I’m going to try to do a better job of logging live things and such, but it’s 1:11, and I’m tired, and have to get up in 5 hours, so I’ll just add a placeholder for now.
Good show, would have been great had they played more old stuff, but truly a very nice suprise to see they (he?) had quite a bit of stage presence. Q&A all night long, which was good. Obviously lots of very big fans in the front who asked interesting questions. Suprised to see he came on for the encore (if you could call it that, one song on a borrowed guitar) w/ a beer. Managed to work man love & camel fucker (sarcastically) into his patter.
Great crowd, very white of course, but SILENT & appreciative. Never hear the BB quiet for a solo song.
Don’t be confused though, they rawked. Didn’t think I’d need the earplugs, and put them in my pocket out of habit, but not at all a laid back set on some of the new stuff.
Had my favorite spot for listening alone – upstairs next to the sound board & bar.