A bit early for the weekend rundown, I know, but I wanted to mention a pair of shows going on tonight (Tues., November 3rd) and tomorrow (Wed., November 4th; duh), because I've heard bits & pieces of the headlining band of each lately and have found myself mightily impressed...
Surfer Blood/ Muhammidali/ Buxton @ Mango's
This one's tonight's one-show-to-rule-'em-all, and whoa, color me blown away. Florida boys Surfer Blood do their home state (and their badass name, although they apparently hated all the surfer kids they knew back in HS) proud with lead single "Swim (To Reach The End)," combining a Beach Boys-y melodic sweetness with an echoey Guided By Voices guitar roar, a fist-pumping Britpunk energy, and a heavy dose of Parts & Labor noise, and holy fuck, is it cool. Seriously, this is headed straight for the mix CD pile for me. Perfect music for driving in the sun, windows down, not giving a damn who hears you bellowing along. Check it for yourself right here:
Surfer Blood - "Swim (To Reach The End)"
Of course, that ain't all there is; what I've heard of the band's other tunes are more Beach Boys-y, really, although they take that '60s California sheen and grungify it nicely, running it through an amp stolen from either the Grifters or Silversun Pickups, I can't tell which for sure. "Floating Vibes" is sweet and fuzzed-out, "Harmonix" is New Wave-y in the best possible way (I'm loving the song-title-inspiring harmonics), and "Twin Peaks" is nicely buzzing and frustrated and messy.
Hat tip, btw, goes to Artrocker for convincing me to give these guys a listen...
And hey, I'd be really, truly remiss if I didn't mention the equally awesome local boys playing tonight, too -- Muhammidali, with their heavily '90s-inflected indie-rock sound, is a great complement to the Surfer Blood crew, and while their tour antics and public personalities tend towards the drunk & disorderly, the band writes some honest-to-God gems and pulls 'em off nicely.
Then there's Buxton, about whom I've said many, many, many things in the past, all of which they totally deserve. I love, love, love their jangly, indie-country-folk sound, not to mention frontman Sergio's impassioned warble, and they seriously can do no wrong by me. Check here for more fleshed-out gushing on the awesomeness that is their (relatively) recent "Feathers"/"Flint" 7-inch.
Mimicking Birds/Airon Paul Dugas & The Religion/Winter Wallace @ The Mink
Another pleasant surprise for tomorrow night's show, Mimicking Birds -- which is bedroom-recording songwriter Nate Lacy plus touring bandmates Tim Skellenger and Aaron Hanson on guitar & drums -- spin out some beautifully meandering indie-folk that reminds me equally of Kind of Like Spitting and Fleet Foxes. Lacy's music is gentle and sweet, with an Eastern Sea-ish warmth and half-scratched, ghostly, backwoodsy vocals that're reminiscent of Chad VanGaalen and that make me want to drift off to sleep under a tree somewhere cold (but not snowy, obviously; I've read my Jack London).
You can check out a bunch of Lacy's songs up on his Virb site, by the by, should you not be willing to take my word for it:
Mimicking Birds - Home and Somewhere else...
It's good stuff, truly, well worthy of being signed (as they are) to Isaac Brock's Glacial Pace Recordings. Hopefully the band's soft, quiet-but-not-melancholy folkiness won't get swallowed up by The Mink's boominess (assuming they haven't fixed up the place some since I was there last, obviously).
I'm hopeful, though, esp. considering that the openers for tomorrow night are two excellent local-type people, Airon Paul Dugas & The Religion and Winter Wallace. The former is an awesomely inspired, countrified folksinger who writes some great, great songs and happens to be backed up by members of the equally jaw-dropping Paris Falls, masquerading as "The Religion."
Winter Wallace, for her part, is a little different, less in the folk vein and more of a husky-voiced singer/songwriter like Beth Orton or Fiona Apple. And surprisingly, she pulls it off well enough to make the resemblance impressive. Her voice is wonderfully smoky and sultry, with arrangements that are pretty mesmerizing, and new song "Lisa" turns things down a bit but still works. Check out the review of her EP from last spring right up here.
More to come, as always...
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