Ramblings of a Redhead Music Snob

Life & Music in New York, My City

Posts Tagged ‘Live Music’

SF’s Soft White Sixties Should Be Huge!

Posted by xneverwherex on January 31, 2015

The Soft White Sixties
Mahgeetah
Coo Coo Birds
Brick & Mortar Music Hall
1/28/15

San Francisco’s The Soft White Sixties finished off their month-long residency at The Brick & Mortar Music Hall this Wednesday night. And what a show it was. With birthdays on hand, the boys were ready to celebrate.

I had been meaning to see TSWS since coming across them last year as they were playing SXSW. Why this band is not bigger is beyond me. The band is pure infectious energy and took control of the stage. They started off the set with “Queen of the Press Club”. Ryan‘s bass lines are just impressive. Its a full-on rock song with some great solid guitars. And the drummer, Joey Bustos, was out of control, just tearing it up. With his arms all tatted up and big smiles he just went crazy on the drums.

The Soft White Sixties

The band has a solid garage-rock sound meets psychedelic, 60s sound and are so loud. Its pure, raw explosive energy. The band will have you rocking your head off and bouncing around in no time. The band next went into “Lemon Squeezer” which is more of a catchy song with a great chorus that will have you singing along in no time. Filled with a catchy keys section, its got a more dance-y vibe to it. By the time the guitars come in, you will be dancing your ass off!

Lead singer Octavio Genera is nothing short of impressive. The way he works a stage and commands an audience is something most artists can only dream of having. He danced across the stage so many times, whipping that microphone around and pulling off some excellent moves. He was so engaging and has gorgeous vocals.

Its a band that can be seen over and over as they clearly love doing this and its evident in their show. By the end of the show, the crowd and the band were spent with it being insanely hot and sweaty in the club and so much dancing.

It was also a special show in that it was Octavio and Joey’s birthday. In true SF fashion, a “burrito cake” was brought out with candles and all. Lots of champagne was flowing and lots of drinking was had. It was one hell of a fun celebration.

Openers Mahgeetah seem to have a huge following. While their music is good, it just seems so boring. There was only so much I could take before really hoping it would end. They are quite talented guys, but theres just something a bit lacking in the band. Perhaps with a better stage show, the band would be awesome.

Coo Coo Birds

Coo Coo Birds

Coo Coo Birds were pretty awesome. Fun garage rock, psych-pop hip shaking songs. Throw in some gritty guitars/bass and make it a little dirty and youve got yourself one hell of a band. Add some throaty vocals and youre set. The band is not to be missed and will remind you of the 60s (in hair and looks) and puts on one hell of a fun show!

Set List
Queen of the Press Club
Lemon Squeezer
Wont You Come With Me
When This All Started
Treat Me
Don’t Lie To Me
Up to the Light
City Lights
Children of the Revolution (T Rex cover)
Knock It Loose
Kick Me Back

The Boys are Back in Town (Thin Lizzy cover)

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Posted in Adventures in the Big City, Live Music, Random Ramblings, San Francisco | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Its Time To Wake Up – La Femme

Posted by xneverwherex on November 2, 2014

La Femme
Sego
Future Twin
10/30/14
Slims

Paris-based La Femme was in town on Thursday night, the last night of their US tour, and were ready to start the Halloween party a tad bit early. The band came on stage around 11pm and played for nearly an hour and 45 minutes, properly bringing in the holiday. Sasha graced the stage in what looked like a lounge-y housecoat and pajama bottom styled pants, with the housecoat very open revealing a very naked chest. So it only took moments before the crowd (men and women) were yelling for him to take it off.

La Femme

La Femme

La Femme was perfect for California bringing their surf-electro-wave music to town. If they werent singing in French, they might be mistaken for a California surf punk band. They definitely have perfected the style but made it their own. At times they had the sexiness of Serge Gainsbourg (the breathy sultry music) complete with some great dancing. The band members all worked the stage dancing across it lost in the music.

The band turned Slims into one hell of a chaos infused dance floor. There was more moshing/circle pits than dancing (a pity), but the crowd was very into it. Only real complaints were the ginormous guys who were crushing the females in front – I walked out of the show with a bloodied up elbow and a fair amount of bruises including bruised ribs. (note: Im so not cut out for this). There was some stage diving as well as a few band members joining in on the fun on the floor. “Its Time To Wake up (2023)” really had people moving — with a great mix of vocals sung together, an electro meets psychedelic vibe and a lot of pot smoking. Their songs seemed to last forever and at times it was trance like. “Sur La Planche 2013” was as catchy as ever with plenty of people singing along.

I did notice a lot of French people in attendance and a lot of French speaking which isnt seen all that often. The band, keeping true to their album title Psycho Tropical Berlin, played a set encompassing all the different styles. From Berlin cold-wave, to the beach tropical sounds, deep into the psychedelic – lots of keyboards (lots!) and a good amount of guitars. The band was insanely brilliant.

LA via Provo, UT band Sego was one of the openers. And they really killed it. Reminiscent of Bloc Party, minus the catchy choruses, infused with LCD Soundsystem and you pretty much get this band. Their music was fun with lots of catchy bass lines and a keyboardist that was going crazy. Dance-punk at its finest, I expect to be seeing a lot more of this band.

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NO! Casual Sex on Thursday!

Posted by xneverwherex on March 20, 2014

Thursday March 13
SXSW
Austin, Texas

Thursday was a bit of a somber day around some of the clubs. There was a lot of talk about the accident the prior night that killed 3 people. It was tragic — and I was just blocks away from where it happened. Thankfully, I was hanging out with the rappers.

I started the day out with The Beastie Boys — well not really — but it was a panel about the Beastie Boys and copyright vs fair use laws. It was informative and I NEED to be working for Leslie Frank (or at least at her firm). This is the kind of law that is beyond fascinating. There are no black/white answers when it comes to fair use and this is not the place to get into what happened with them and Goldieblox. Regardless, the conversation was very interesting and most of the crowd agreed that GoldieBlox was in the wrong.

Now onto the music — Oh and Edward Sharpe was a no-show for his panel 😦 😦 😦

As I was eating at the Convention Center I heard some great music from upstairs. So ended up there to check it out. Much to my surprise, it was the EXCELLENT Mary Onettes. Now I had seen them years before, but they were much tighter and sounded awesome. The day stages had some excellent sound systems. The band has some very catchy hooks and great songs. The lead singer has one hell of a great voice. I need to be seeing them again soon.

After that, it was another chance to see NO. And yes, they were still as awesome. They were playing as if they were in a club wanting us all to get up and dance. Didnt quite happen, but everyone loved them. They’re the utmost professionals and know how to put on a show, even if it means rocking out in a sweater. The band has so many infectious tunes, I felt like I knew most of them already after seeing them for just a second time.

Then it was off for some British bands. Battle Lines from Leeds were playing some dancey electronica. The set seemed so short but everyone was having a good time.

Casual Sex - Scotland

Casual Sex

After that it was time for some Casual Sex. Sadly, the band was not offering any (save for the single drummer – who didnt seem too amused) as theyre all in relationships. The band is cheeky and clearly have a great time doing this. The band is from Scotland and Sam Smith, lead singer, is what its all about. He reminds me of Brian Molko – he did put on lipstick during the show – and clearly likes his make-up and dresses (although not in public apparently). Sam also brings to mind the glam Bowie years as well as their music. The band’s music was some good fun jangly guitar rock and you feel like youve been transported back to the glam of the 70s. Their music will get you dancing in no time. A band I will definitely see again.

Later on, it was time to hit up a hotel. The bands were playing at the hotel bar/restaurant and there was a small stage for them. Lys – from France were a really great band. They have this beautiful, lush, dream, indie-pop sound. It was so full and just sweeps you away. The lead singer had amazing vocals and it was great when he paired up with the woman in the band – their melodies were beautiful together. This was perfect music for dinner-time. While it was lush and beautiful they brought they energy with full, ripe guitars. It was just brilliant.

And then the night just went off course. I scrapped what I had planned and just changed it up. The prior night I met the band De Nalgas from Mexico City. I started talking with the drummer Irving when I got confused about Rey Pila playing. He was really cool and invited me to his showcase. He told me they were a punk band and similar to the Clash. I mean seriously, how can anyone miss that. Old school punk and their lead singer has a blue mohawk. So of course, I was going to see them.

I had jumped over to Metal & Lace to check out some bands not knowing what to expect – and OMG Scorpio Rising was the most insane fun band. The band is from Austin and the lead singer was offering all sorts of things to non-locals; oh yeah – shes pretty crazy fun. She was quite acrobatic and it reminded me of a burlesque show. The bassist walked the room as well as outside and pretty much played with everyone in the crowd (including the bartender). They just had so much energy. It was pretty cool. Now I couldnt tell you a bit what they sounded like, but I remember enjoying them.

De Nalgas de Mexico City

De Nalgas

De Nalgas was up next. How do you top that first act – you play straight up punk. And that they did. And they were _THAT_ good!! It was even in Spanish and while not everyone spoke it, everyone was so into it. There were some guys in front moshing (thankfully no crowd surfing). The lead singer, Boris, is an excellent frontman. He tears up that stage and does more scissor kicks then Ive seen in quite a while. He owned the stage and got the crowd really involved. The band all came out in black/white De Nalgas shirts and they all seemed to have tats that said that as well (along with 1989 – the year of their births). And Irving, the drummer, tore it up with one hell of a drum solo. It was f’ing brilliant. Everyone in the band had great camaraderie and were just tight. If punk is your thing, then this band you have to see. And their last song ‘presidente’ – was entertaining with the crowd yelling ‘pinche’ before ‘presidente’. Total bonding experience.

If anyone knows of a venue that needs a punk band to play – do let me know. I know the band would LOVE to play here. Oh and I forgot that this was their FIRST show in the States!

After some punk, it was time for some church. Yeah – really. I ended up spending the rest of the evening at two churches. The first church was Central Presbyterian Church which is a gorgeous church with beautiful stained glass windows. I sat upstairs and the acoustics were amazing. Its a venue just designed for musicians with sound that just carries.

I caught a few songs from Haley Bonar who has this gorgeous voice. The music was lo-fi/minimalist but with her vocals it just filled the church. It has almost a slight country-esque sound to it but comes across nearly haunting. I would definitely see her again. She reminds me of an artist to see on a cold winter night – she would just warm up the room.

One of my favorite bands from the festival were Mother Falcon from Austin. The band, which has about 18 members in it, is a symphonic indie band. The band is all very talented with a lot of them who play multi-instruments. The members seem to take turns on singing the songs and it just works. Their music is so full and rich its hard to not fall in love with them. They do a great Radiohead cover and its quite awesome. This is the type of band that is perfect for this venue. The room just fills with so many sounds, its just poetry in motion.

Curtis Harding

Curtis Harding

Curtis Harding, former backup singer to CeeLo, is one hell of an impressive guy. He’s got blues and soul flowing out of him. He’s from Atlanta and his songs had so much raw passion with so much feeling. The set was way too short for him and he talked some about growing up playing gospel and being in the church. He was so great and I so wanted more, but he had to get to another venue nowhere near and cut it short.

While I am sad that Curtis Harding didnt have a longer set, it did mean I got to hit up another church and check out Gruff Rhys (of Super Furry Animals, of course). So I ended up around the corner at St. Davids Historic Sanctuary. Very different than the other church, there was drinking allowed and the staff was much more casual. Gruff is always a pleasure to see and one I never miss if I can help it. He’s so soft spoken and waited to start the show while others came in. He was polite and kept words to a minimum. He started out the set by asking us to pretend we recognized the song so when he sang it a few minutes later it would seem we were all into it. Classic Gruff. So he played the first line of the song and then stopped. Then restarted the song – we all clap and scream – and he thanks us and he plays the rest.

Gruff Rhys - American Interior

Gruff Rhys

His new music – to accompany his film, American Interior – is just gorgeous. It just works and it so fits the film. Most of the music was about the journey with John Evans – a long, lost relative who may have found the U.S. and the quest to find a Native American tribe that spoke Welsh. The music is just beautiful and so fitting. Kliph Scurlock from The Flaming Lips, joined Gruff on drums. He was awesome. Gruff was pretty quiet with a few things to say — mostly asking the time — and then it ended with something like ‘oh fuck. we’re done’. And of course with that, a few signs were held up ‘thank you’ and ‘the end’. One of my favorites. ALWAYS!!

Typhoon

Typhoon

The night ended with me barely getting back into the other church to see Oregon-based Typhoon. I was able to get in after about 10 minutes and it was so worth it. The band killed it. The band has a bunch of violins, horns and drums but mostly beautiful harmonies. Frontman, Kyle Morton, has beautiful, haunting songs that cover most topics but lots to do with life and death which was fitting for my last band. At 12am the band paused as the pastor of the church came out to say a few words about the tragedy the prior night. He talked about life and death and living life to the fullest of every moment of the day. The band had stopped playing and the church went quiet for the 2 minutes of silence. It was beautiful with a lot of tears. It was so full of emotion. After 2 minutes, Typhoon continued to play. With their 11 members — they brought so much life to the church and the sound just echoed through and it was gorgeous. It was a show to never forget.

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More SXSW Bands

Posted by xneverwherex on March 20, 2014

Wed. March 12, 2014

Due to getting majorly sick — this is way more delayed then I would have liked. Ive been resting so often that I barely could turn on a computer. Cest la vie.

The evening was spent running around trying to find bands that sounded interesting. And here is what I encountered. Some good, some didnt care for and some who just werent there. Sadness.

Pagiins — I lasted a few minutes for their show at Holy Mountain Backyard. It was beyond painfully loud. They are a very guitar heavy garage-rock band. It didnt work for me, and even with earplugs I was dying.

Then it was off to my ONLY entry into Stubbs. I have no clue how that even happened as the place was packed. I was there to see England’s Eagulls. They were on my ‘must-see’ list and its too bad I saw them there. The mix was all off, and making out vocals and songs were impossible. On their more popular song, I could somewhat make out the guitar riffs enough to at least recognize the song. Needless to say, lasted maybe 3-4 songs before taking off. (Note: if youre at Stubb’s — the sound is way better just outside in line — go figure)

Lost in the Trees

Lost in the Trees

Then it was back to Holy Mountain Backyard to see Lost in the Trees. They were quite good and endearing to the crowd. They had some pleasant indie-pop songs and I feel that they are a band worth seeing again — esp in a better venue.

Later that evening (pre-Black Violin) it was off to see Papa. They have the potential of being a good indie-pop band, but it seemed the only thing special about the band is the obnoxious lead singer who must have thought it was funny swearing as every other word. I was so bored.

At this point I was supposed to hit up Rd Gld Grn (Red Gold Green) from DC who I was really wanting to see. I got to the Palm Door on 6th (avoid like a plague) and the line was INSANE!!! Thankfully I thought to check the schedule and saw their names crossed off — sadly, the band didn’t make SXSW as someone got sick 😦 And I had missed them in SF — Doh!

Instead I ended up over at Main II quite early and caught a bunch of rappers. I couldnt tell anyone who I saw (assuming schedules were right — which I dont think they were) I could prob figure it out. It wasnt totally my thing, but the crowd was so into it. Too much of the ‘ho’s and bitches’ and I just tune out.

Temples

Temples @ IFC Fairgrounds

Earlier there was Temples from England at the IFC Fairgrounds. It was a pretty cool spot and seemed like a small county fair (slide and all). A lot of food trucks were around, but having just had dinner it wasnt that appealing. I should have come here more often as the sound was incredible. Temples sounded great with an awesome 70s pysch rock sound and even the 70s vibe. The lead singer looked like he had stepped out of the 70s with platforms and a huge fro. He rocked it. The band was tight and so worth seeing again.

The day time set started out at The Blackheart and was one of my favorite spots. It was super low-key and so casual. It was totally my kind of place. The bands included Denmark’s very young trio Baby in Vain. These girls can ROCK!! Played some great garage rock. And they shred on their guitars. My friend and I loved them the most, and of course, they werent even on my list to see.

Australia’s Panama — sadly, very forgetful. They were playing some electro-dance heavy keyboard music, but they never even seemed that dance-y and were boring.

The High Highs from Australia as well were good. I loved their shoegaze music and the dreamy pop music was just right for the day. They have a very similar sound to Wild Nothing. Not a bad thing, and cant wait to see them again.

Terraplane Sun

Terraplane Sun on Rainey Street

The last afternoon band was a band I had really been wanting to see. Filter — which was of course packed — had some great bands on their set. I only was able to catch Terraplane Sun and they were AWESOME!! They lived up to everything I wanted them to be. The band, from Venice, CA, has a really great garage rock, bluesy pop sound. Theyre infectious and have some great songs that you find yourself singing along to and dancing to. Thankfully, I already have tickets to see them when they come here post-festival.

Lastly, I should add that I made a HUGE effort to see some panels. Im a huge sucker to sit in and listen to ‘experts’ talk and maybe learn a thing or two. So today’s panel was the ‘Nerdy Music Panel’ which featured a bunch of nerd-core hip-hop artists. It was interesting to learn about the genre and besides Dr. Awkward was there as well as Mega Ran (Random). So if youre into video games, and like hip-hop but want it more interesting than what a lot of rappers are rapping about – check this out. You will LOVE it!!

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Wild Cub Closes Out 2013 Concerts

Posted by xneverwherex on December 20, 2013

Wild Cub
Rickshaw Stop
12/19/13

Its hard to believe that 2013 is nearly over. But Wild Cub made it clear that they would end out the year with a bang! It was their final concert of the tour and year and the band was beyond excited to be back in San Francisco. They had only played one other time in SF (back in July – when I missed their show but ended up in Austin) and had an awesome time. I had heard others on the street outside talking about how awesome that first show was. So, of course, my expectations were now set a bit higher.

It was a late show night with doors at 10pm. I was told it would definitely not be a late night, but it turned out that the band didnt hit the stage until around 11:15pm. Indeed another late night at Popscene. Thankfully, Aaron Axelsen was spinning some great tunes and the new War on Drugs song is f’ing brilliant. I cannot wait to hear the new album.

Wild Cub

March also brings the release of Wild Cub’s debut album, Youth, which is INCREDIBLE. Ive been listening to it on repeat the day-after and am seriously not disappointed at all. The band formed after Keegan left Brooklyn (the rents too damn high!) for the greener pastures of Nashville. He is an endearing front-man who just exudes energy and still looks like he probably did in the 90s. Pegged pants, nice shoes, a slightly shaved head with long hair in front.

The band has a Prince vibe on some of their songs. Check out ‘Wild Light’. Their music is fun, catchy, indie-pop thats quite dance-y and will have you clapping in no time. Add some great melodies and infectious keys and some great hooks on their bass and voila! The band wasted no time getting the crowd moving with the ever-catchy ‘Jonti’ early in their set.

‘Wishing Well’ with its hook of a bassline and a sound that will take you back to the 80s, is one awesome song. Seeing it live is even better as Keegan tears up the stage. He dances all over the stage while playing guitar exuding fun and pleasure. The band then slowed it down with ‘Drive’ which is probably one of my favorite songs. With gorgeous guitars and Keegan’s smooth vocals the song feels like blissed out summer joy.

Wild Cub

The band definitely ended their tour on a high note. They talked about the great Chinese food they consumed (for about 7 people) and just their love of the city. They changed their set list a bit from their usual set. Keegan wanted to play his favorite song of 2013 and did a great rendition of Lykke Li’s ‘I Follow Rivers’. It was really awesome. They added a couple new songs and just did not want the night to end. So they pushed it out as long as possible. Instead of vanishing for an encore, they just remained on stage – announced their last song and broke out ‘When Doves Cry’ from Prince. While its hard for anyone to hit Prince’s notes – this was a pretty awesome cover.

One hell of a way to end 2013. Wild Cub delivered and made it an awesome last show of the year!

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100% Fun w/Matthew Sweet

Posted by xneverwherex on November 4, 2011

Matthew Sweet
The Shadowboxers
City Winery
11/2/11

20 years ago, Matthew Sweet came out with one of the best albums ever Girlfriend. Its quite hard to believe that it was so long ago. But, it was surely worth the wait to see the album played in its entirety. Matthew Sweet, albeit a bit bigger, sounded as great as he did all those years ago. I had only seen him once previously, for the 100% Fun tour, and wasn’t sure what I’d get this many years later. One thing I can say with certainty – I’m so glad I decided to check out this show.

Due to a 2nd show later that night, the opener was (thankfully) cut short and soon enough Matthew Sweet was appearing. He seemed more than comfortable on the stage at City Winery now going on his 3rd night. He was chatty and said how energetic the crowd was. For a seated show, it was great to see people getting up and and cheering and a lot of fist pumping. The fans were just beyond excited to be there.

Matthew Sweet

Ive always been a huge fan of power pop bands and the guitars were sounding great. From the opening chords of ‘Divine Intervention’ the band gave it everything they got. Some of the songs were filled with so much guitar and it seemed like they really went off on the guitar solos. It was brilliantly awesome.

Matthew walked us through the album – Side 1 (on vinyl/cassette whatever you had) clearly had the punch of the album. All the singles were in the beginning. Its insane when the album goes from ‘Divine Intervention’ to ‘I’ve Been Waiting’ and then ‘Girlfriend’. I mean, what more can anyone want. As side 1 seemed to disappear quickly, soon he was telling us about the deep cuts of side 2. And there are some gems on that side. ‘I Wanted To Tell You’ is pretty amazing! The great thing about this was the album is 15 songs. For that time anything about 12 or so was considered too much. So the last 3 songs were meant to be the hidden tracks – so if you kept your record (or cd) running long enough they just kind of appeared. Or on cassette they were just there. Most of us didnt even know they were hidden, so now theyre just considered part of the album. Great VH1 pop up info.

As the show was coming to an end, he told us he’d be playing a song off of 100% Fun. Its hard to imagine a show without ‘Sick of Myself’. The guitars were so loud and full on that song. Easily one of my favorite songs and everyone sang along. It was so great to have a full album of ‘Girlfriend’ and then ‘Sick of Myself’. I couldnt have asked for a better show (maybe longer). He did manage to even put in an encore and included a song from ‘Altered Beast’, the more popular ‘Time Capsule’. I wished he had time for more, but another show had to go on!

The openers from Atlanta. Oy! The Shadowboxers were one of the most boring cliche/light FM album rock bands I had ever seen live. It was verging on being painful and the only thing that made it relatively ok was that it was short. They were just so forgettable that its about all I can even say.

If youre old enough to remember this album, and loved it then, do yourself a favor and be sure to see him if he’s not already come to your town. He is so worth the money and the album is so amazing to hear performed live. Will easily be one of the best shows that I saw of 2011. And for those wondering, no Richard Lloyd (Television) is not currently playing with him.

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They All Want To Love The Cause

Posted by xneverwherex on September 12, 2011

Broken Social Scene
9/8/11
Williamsburg Waterfront

The Waterfront turned out to be a hot, humid night for us. While the view is nothing short of spectactular, the air quality not so much. Besides, a young kid fainted not just once, but twice during the early part of the BSS set. Thats how you know youll be in for a great night.

BSS came out to a smaller crowd, but a group of fans that just loved them. They opened the set with Cause = Time and what a way to start. The crowd was pretty into them and even the fans who were there for TV on the Radio seemed to get into it. People were bopping their heads and singing their songs.

It was a bit sad when a song or two later Kevin Drew said how much he had loved playing for the past 10 years, and 5 shows in NYC in the past year was even more than his hometown. Needless to say, it was kind of obvious that they were ready for a bit of a break. At this point it sounds like an indefinite hiatus with the words ‘Dont Forget Us.’ So that was a bit sad. I cant really imagine someone filling that void or anyone ever being quite like them.

They did play close to an hour set which was decent, but obviously people wanted more. It was great to have some brass on quite a few songs and the band members dancing around and having a great time. The sax section was amazing.

They included a cover from Modest Mouse which was quite good. Lisa Lobsinger still sounded great, but its hard to not miss the likes of Emily Haines or Amy Millan on ‘7/4 (Shoreline)’. They also included a song that Andrew Whiteman had written the prior day called ‘Fire Eye’d Boy’ which of course was a crowd pleaser. Too bad it really wasnt a song that had just been written in the spur of the moment.

In typical fashion, Kevin didnt quite know how to end things. Some fans were calling out songs (which I couldnt hear what they were saying), but he chided them with it being the obvious ending song. While at one point he thought he had finished the set, he was told they would have time for one ‘final’ song. They finally closed out the night with ‘Ibi Dreams Of Pavement (A Better Day)’. It was a song they hadnt played in awhile and still sounded as great as ever.

While the performance as a whole was far from the greatest and the band might not have seemed super into it, it was still a great show. I would hate to think that BSS might not come back here and it was their final show ever in NYC, but if it was all I can say is thanks for all the great times. There were so many good shows  great shows that I got to see with them and they will surely be missed.

Setlist:

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Weekend Gets Loud

Posted by xneverwherex on April 7, 2011

Weekend
Little Girls
Mercury Lounge
4/6/11

Weekend apparently is one of the new buzz-worthy/blog-worthy bands. It was hard to figure out if everyone there was seeing them because they loved the band – or if it was just the new band to check out. It was packed by the time they hit the stage. A friend commented – they had a review on their new album in Sports Illustrated. With their album titled – Sports – it indeed got a review – and a good one at that.

I commented to my friends – I know they should be loud – but really its only 3 guys. Well those 3 guys from San Francisco proved that they could be beyond loud. The lead singer/bassist had really great vocals that worked well with the loudness of the bass. At times the vocals seemed almost muted but it was very apparent that the vocals had their own place. The guitarist never seemed to be able to stay still and was moving non-stop – getting more and more into each song. He’d be kneeling on the stage and playing his heart out – in between sips of water. The drummer is equally loud and keeps the band moving at a great pace.

Their post-punk influences are easy to be seen. At times feeling like they could be Joy Division – dark but not nearly as gloomy. And the heavy guitars are oh so reminiscent of Jesus & Mary Chain. While their album material is great – the crowd seemed very into their newer songs that they had just written. As they introduced their song ‘Little Girls’ they cheekily noted – no its not for the band its the name of the song. It was a great solid set and their 40 minutes seemed to fly by.

Openers Little Girls from Toronto were interesting. They mentioned casually about them having to use Weekend’s gear and something to do with visas. That they probably would rather not have mentioned. We’ll leave it at that. While some of their songs were really great and had a dance-edge/pop sound – musically it was like they hadnt yet figured out what direction they were heading. So you never knew quite what you were going to get. The guitarist seemed to be having consistent problems with the sound/feedback and just couldnt seem to get on with it. After nearly every song it seemed there was a new problem.

Perhaps theres a bit of potential in them, but at this point, Im not sure I can totally see it.

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LCD Did Not Lose Their Edge

Posted by xneverwherex on April 4, 2011

LCD Soundsystem
Liquid Liquid
Madison Square Garden
4/2/11

The night had finally arrived and it was finally time to say goodbye to LCD Soundsystem. It was a bittersweet farewell and the band couldnt have gone out any better.

With hopes of Daft Punk coming out, we would be surprised with another band. LCD greeted us with some other Northerners instead for “North American Scum”. How fitting that it was The Arcade Fire. Win, Will, Regine and Jeremy came out and helped LCD sing the song. It was truely awesome watching the band excitedly sing along and jump with enthusiasm.

The band treated us to a 3.5 hour set that was reminiscent of the shows at Terminal 5. It was broken out into 3 sets with the first and second set being almost identical to the others. It was great to begin the show with ‘Dance Yrself Clean’ which brought the floor to a frenzy. Watching from above, as the first note came on the crowd went into overdrive. Everyone was there to have a great time and presumably dance themselves clean.

James is an awesome frontman and took the crowd through an awesome first set. There wasnt much banter as he went from ‘Dance Yrself Clean’ right into ‘Drunk Girls’. The set continued at a frenzied pace and included ‘Daft Punk Is Playing At My House’, ‘Time To Get Away’, ‘Too Much Love’ and of course, the natural show closer (which it is not) ‘All my Friends’. What was more surprising is that ‘All My Friends’ wasnt even the last song of the first set. It makes for a beautiful closing song.

All of a sudden an hour was gone, and it was that much closer to the end. 45:33 brought out Reggie Watts and a great brass section that sounded amazing. ‘Freak Out/Starry Eyes’ sounded really great and everyone was dancing up a storm during that song. It seemed that for parts of the other it was a little more subdued, but it was definitely needed before the third part came in.

The set would soon be closing – but LCD packed in as much as they could. They played one song (I believe it was Bye Bye Bayou) for the first time. My friend was beyond excited, but I could have sworn he said it was something else. Arcade Fire (as previously mentioned) showed up on ‘North American Scum’ and we got a very loud ‘Us vs Them’. Crowd favorite ‘Yeah’ had everyone singing and dancing.

It was great to see LCD bring out their first guitarist who played on a few a songs. The drummer looked oh so comfortable in his shorts and considering how hot and sweaty it was, he was very prepared. James Murphy started a countdown of the last few songs. Much like New Years Eve, it was never meant to be sad, it was just meant to be a huge dance party. And soon it was only fitting that they would play ‘New York, I Love You But Youre Bringing Me Down’ for one last time.

Who knows if we’ll get a reunion in 3-4 years, but this couldnt have ended better. My only gripe was the ticket fiasco – it was great people got tix at the door for face and on the floor. For those of us who managed to get any early, the angles were quite bad and it was hard to see at points with the rig for the lights. It seemed we were barely acknowledged till the end. Regardless, I had one hell of a time. It was great to see that most the crowd abided with James’ request for the black/white dress code. Boo to those of you in the front floor with a RED shirt on. It just screamed for attention.

SETLIST

Set 1:
“Dance Yrself Clean”
“Drunk Girls”
“I Can Change
“Time to Get Away”
“Get Innocuous!”
“Daft Punk Is Playing At My House”
“Too Much Love”
“All My Friends”
“Tired”

Set 2:
45:33 Part One
45:33 Part Two (ft. Reggie Watts)
“Sound of Silver”
45:33 Part Four
45:33 Part Five (ft. Shit Robot)
45:33 Part Six
“Freak Out/Starry Eyes”

Set 3:
“Us V. Them”
“North American Scum” (w/ Régine Chassagne, Win Butler, Will Butler & Jeremy Gara of Arcade Fire)
“Bye Bye Bayou” (Alan Vega cover)
“You Wanted A Hit”
“Tribulations”
“Movement”
“Yeah”

Encore 1:
“Someone Great”
“Losing My Edge”
“Home”

Encore 2:
“All I Want”
“Jump Into The Fire” (Harry Nilsson cover)
“New York, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down”

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Daft Punk Is Playing…

Posted by xneverwherex on March 30, 2011

After that last post – it made me want to remember some of the greatest moments Ive had with LCD Soundsystem. Its hard to pick a greatest show (of any band), and the greatest memories can be harder. But without a doubt here are some of the best.

Chicago – Lollapalooza – August 2007
Indeed – Daft Punk was playing at my house. If my house is Grant Park and Im living in Chicago. For those couple of hours life was unreal. LCD Soundsystem played one hell of a set with staples like ‘All My Friends’ but at the moment that they played ‘Daft Punk…’ it was nearly surreal. My friend and I were jumping around like no tomorrow. Moments later Daft Punk was playing on the stage next to them and that was a dance party like I had never seen before. Will anything ever be that great in my concert-going history. As far as a duo – unless Daft Punk shows up on Saturday night – Im not sure anything will surpass that moment. Even still – a festival in Chicago – a gorgeous night – two awesome bands playing back-to-back. Unforgettable.

Baltimore – Virgin Freefest – Sept 2010
Going to a festival that is free is awesome regardless. LCD Soundsystem headlining that same festival is even more awesome. It was a packed house that night, but somehow friends and I made it to the front of the stage. It was a dance party up there and ‘Yeah’ was a highlight. Everyone was friends for an hour or so dancing along and singing along. It was great! The band had seemed so happy to be playing that night. It was hard to imagine not long after theyd announce that they were calling it quits.

Webster Hall w/Yacht – May 2007
If I recall dates correctly, this was my first time finally having the chance to see them. I remember showing up with a group of friends and being close enough to the stage. While I dont remember most of the set itself, I do remember it being a dance party. Everyone was dancing up a storm and it was prior to Webster Hall renovating. The floor moved and it felt like it would crash at any moment. It was so enjoyable and the band was so fun. It really didnt matter what they played.

It turns out it was also the guitarists last night playing with the band. Interestingly enough – I can say I saw that twice. One with the band before he left – and the last time the band ever will play together (until the reunion shows start out).

This setlist was quite good as well:
US v Them, Draft Punk, Time To Get Away, NA Scum, All My Friends, Get Innocuous, Tribulations, What The Tapes, Movement, Yeah…Someone Great, NY I Love You

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