I’ve been bumming pretty hard on music recently. It’s one of those dry spells where nothing new seems to capture your interest. This, however, has pulled me out of my slump. It’s hosted by the wonderful blog, Microphone Memory Emotion, and is decidedly one of the best lineups of the summer. You’re probably already familiar with Julian Lynch, Ducktails, and Big Troubles. I’ve never blogged about La Big Vic before, though. They reside in a place of wonderful “scapes,” dream-scapes, haze-scapes, sound-scapes. It’s a lot of beautiful noise, and somehow ends up being catchy pop music. I’m loving it right now, and you should definitely get to this show early to check them out. Campfires, from Chicago, also play beautiful, beautiful music. It’s steeped in lots of guitar and has that sort of magical Pavement-y feeling, but sound more like experimental Velvet Underground. Sort of. Point being, I like them a lot. Get to this show early, and stay late!
Tag Archives: Big Troubles
This show is a no-brainer. I’m pretty sure that Real Estate is the artist I blog about most, and I’m pretty sure it’s getting kind of boring. Still, this one-two-three punch of a show is not to be missed, especially because it’s taking place at Le Poisson Rouge. That’s a nice change of pace for these bands, who are usually seen in places like Monster Island or Music Hall of Williamsburg. If you’re tired of Kurt Vile and Real Estate, then go see Yellow Fever again, who are playing with the most excellent Wet Dog and Larkin Grimm at Monster Island.
Recommended Thursday Show: Dan Deacon, Eternal Summers, Big Troubles, and Dustin Wong of Ponytail at Cake Shop!!!!
I shouldn’t have to write anything about this. Dan Deacon. Cake Shop. Tiny, tiny Cake Shop. Eternal Summers and Big Troubles would be a bomping show on their own. My only reservation in recommending this show is fear of my readers getting trampled, or perhaps dying of fun. By hook or by crook, if you can go to this show, go. Go, go, go!
I’m visiting a friend in Columbus, Ohio until Saturday (what up Done Waiting!), so blogging will probably be brief until then. However, I can barely contain my love for Alex Bleeker & The Freaks. They’re the best band to sound like The Band since The Band, plus it’s fun to see Real Estate change up their instruments and the different results with slightly different roles. Plus, Big Troubles are a big bundle of rock and roll boyish fun. Plus, it’s Cake Shop’s fifth anniversary month and they’re having incredible specials all night. Best place to spend this Friday evening, hands down.
Recommended Saturday Show: Darlings, The Sundelles, Total Slacker, Big Troubles, and My Teenage Stride at Cake Shop
If this show isn’t a who’s who of NYRM’s favorites, then I don’t know what is. I love all of these bands and blog about them at least fairly incessantly, so I feel that this show requires minimal description. It’s a fundraiser for these bands’ journeys to SXSW. They’re only playing twenty minute sets (which should actually be a good prep for the music conference), and all the proceeds go to funding their respective trips to Austin. It’s a good cause and should be a really fun night of absolutely wonderful Brooklyn bands and people. A few MP3s below.
There’s a lot of ways to say what I’m going to say about the show last night, but I’d like to frame it around Webster Hall. There’s really no way around it. Alice Cohen, Run DMT, and Pigeons did not put on successful shows yesterday. Run DMT started off the evening as a solo act. Normally playing with a larger band, it was clear that he had never played by himself before and was incredibly nervous. His trippy, relaxed tunes might have been alright if it weren’t for the fact that, despite the very nice sound equipment at The Studio, you could not hear anything he was doing except the basic track he had already laid down. No guitar, no bass, no melodica. I don’t think that the music would have been anything particularly groundbreaking if you had been able to, but the poor kid didn’t even have a chance when he was contending with such utter sound nonsense. I will make sure to go see him again under better circumstances.
Alice Cohen played dreamy keyboard driven tunes. Definitely not anything up my alley. Maybe good to put on when you’re spacing out doing work, but it did not make for a compelling live performance. To be fair, I was coming off of an Atlas Sound show; Bradford Cox is the master of one-man-sound-noodling. But, to make matters worse, you absolutely could not hear her guitar or any of the looping she was doing. Are you kidding me? Get it together Webster Hall.
Pigeons was the first full band of the evening, and the sound didn’t get much better, though this group definitely has a lot of potential. The only track I can find floating around the Internet is a nice little psych-pop number you can hear below. Definitely peaks your interest, at least. As for their live show, the band definitely has the right look. They don’t quite have the sound yet. I’m just conjecturing here, but it seems like the singer and the second guitar player are married. I bet they play and record music all the time together at home, and decided to put together a band. They got their friends to play bass and drums, and practiced a few times. This wasn’t quite enough to make their songs transfer to a live setting. The singer/guitarist had some really interesting guitar solos, but wasn’t quite practiced enough to pull them off. The bass and drums were never quite in sync. The vocals (not the fault of the band) wavered between too loud and too soft, and I’m certain she couldn’t hear what she was singing as she struggled through the noise issues. All of these problems obscured the music they were playing, making it difficult to hear the cool, psych-y tunes of their recording in their live performance. If these guys take the time, though, and practice for just a few more months, tighten up a little bit, and gain some confidence, we could definitely have a good band in the making.
The rest of the evening was an improvement. Big Troubles and Twin Sister are more traditional bands, so the sound problems didn’t hinder their sets quite as much. Twin Sister was good, the lead singer has something about her and I could see a lot of people getting into their band (especially since they’re not doing something that everyone else is doing, pretty refreshing). I will say, though, that I didn’t care for it. Vampires With Dreaming Kids has really grown on me in a major way, but the songs sounded a little too synth-driven live, somehow a little too disco-y. I’ll still keep listening to the EP anyways.
Big Troubles are great. A shiny, loud, happy boy band with great guitar noises and short, interesting songs. They improved by leaps in bounds just in the past month since I saw them at Bruar Falls. They upped the energy and put on a show bursting with energetic personality, despite the fact that only one of their microphones worked. Expect big things from these fellows.
So what’s the moral of the story here? I’m never going to a show at The Studio at Webster Hall again, and will probably never recommend one either. It wasn’t just last night. I’ve been to the venue five times and the sound has never been right. It seems to suck the soul out of bands that might otherwise put on an excellent performance. And while I do get a kick out of seeing the juxtaposition between the partiers from upstairs waiting in the coat check line with the nerdy music fans downstairs, I just can’t bare to see another good band give a lackluster performance for reasons out of their control. I feel badly giving so many bad reviews today, but I’ll definitely try to catch all of the first bands again in a better venue. Photos and MP3 below.
It’s very late and I’ve posted about both of these bands recently, so let’s consider this a post about Chocolate Bobka (link to the right). This show tomorrow is curated by Chocolate Bobka, and I personally think he has the most exciting up-and-coming music blog right now. The guy’s taste is impeccable (though sometimes runs a tad too much on the dreamy/hazy noise side for me), and he’s doing so much cool stuff. The coolest of which is this magazine/mixtape/video compilation he’s putting out. Basically, he raised a bunch of money in order to create the coolest ‘zine this side of 1999, and is now going to make each of them individually, but will only make as many as are pre-ordered. So head on over to this blog and sign up for your copy today! Also, come to this show tomorrow and say hi in person. I just talked about how cool I think Twin Sister is and all the reviews are coming in positive- tomorrow will be the first time I’m seeing them myself. Big Troubles is another scuzzy garage Brooklyn band, but I thought they had some really promising songs at Bruar Falls a few weeks ago (but needed a little work on the stage presence). Should be a good show.