Dance away those winter blues! Tonight (12/15), Greenpoint’s own Japanese small plates joint Bar Uni is throwing a FREE dance party/DJ night starting at 8pm!
WHAT: Luv Tones 001 – Old Skool | Neo-Soul | Nu-Soul| Classic Hip Hop | Jazz | Alternative | Nu-Jazz | Future Beats | House | Vibez Throwbacks, future sounds and vibey cuts; Luv Tones is here to bring you that soulful bliss you need to push thru the last few days of 2017. Holiday drink specials all night—so come kick it with us to some past, present, and future soul.
NYC-based ambient R&B singer Autre Ne Veut brought his soul-drenched brand of ballads to Bushwick’s newest venue Elsewhere (599 Johnson Ave) last Thursday evening, to a crowd that was hyped to hear some slow and gut-wrenchingly emotional jams. Autre Ne Veut (which translates as “I want no other”), whose real name is Arthur Ashin, was performing with a live drummer and keyboardist/backup vocalist, as he commanded the mic and occasionally riffed on keys. Continue reading →
Last Sunday at Elsewhere (599 Johnson Ave) the night opened with high energy post-punk trio B Boys, who happen to be on the indie Greenpoint label Captured Tracks. I’m not necessarily a post-punk fan, and to me the genre can range from fun to straight up annoying. But B Boys actually were able to sound palatable—a bit like a surfy, less grungy Nirvana. And they played the part of anarchist punks with more irony than anarchy, singing lyrics like “every day is a struggle.” At times, they hit garage-y notes, but with a little more polish. They’re the kind of band I’d have seen in college, but minus the angst. So, they won my approval.
B Boys definitely got the crowd amped up for Brooklyn headliners Parquet Courts. The band’s been around long enough to be able to wistfully (and perhaps bitterly) reference the dwindling Brooklyn DIY scene and the Elsewhere owners’ fallen former venue. When the crowd started catapulting their drinks at the stage during the second song, keyboardist Austin Brown quipped, “This isn’t Glasslands, you can’t throw shit.” And being a band born in Brooklyn in the mid-aughts certainly they’re clearly schooled in the art of playing to a house full of intoxicated locals donning flannels, thick-rimmed glasses and vintage Fugazi shirts. But this time, the scene was different. It was Elsewhere. Continue reading →
Any other rainy Sunday night would find us Netflix-ing but this week we decided to beat our Sunday scaries by heading to Brooklyn Steel (319 Frost St) to see a night of talented bands. Pure Bathing Culture and Land of Talk may have been the openers for American Football but the entire lineup provided stellar performances. Since Brooklyn Steel tends to be a pretty prompt venue, if you had arrived slightly late on Sunday, you would have regretted missing either of these opening bands. Continue reading →
Last Thursday night at Rough Trade (64 N 9th St) opened with Michael Nau performing to a packed room. Nau’s rich warm tones gave a welcoming feel to the cold November night. Previously the frontman for Page France and Cotton Jones, Nau’s style is relaxing with a rockbeat that enables the listener to truly feel like being on a sort of vacation. It’s evident that Nau writes music purely because he enjoys doing so, that he is naturally moved to write it. This puts a heartwarming personal stamp on his songs, everpresent during his performance.
This (sort of) escapism journey continued with David Bazan as he zoomed into giving an other worldly performance. While Bazan and his band unleashed a more thunderous sound than Nau, Bazan remained connected to his spirit. When he often closed his eyes onstage, you could really feel that presence—and that let his talent take over the stage, unobstructed. It’s not always easy to let others into a personal inner world, but Bazan was able to succeed at this. The audience was transported straight into his inner world and feelings. Continue reading →
I had a friend in high school who in the early 90’s introduced me to what I’ll lamely call here ‘Texas music.’ To me that signifies a big sound with a lot of chaos, bass that sounds like guitars, and guitars that sound like bass, and heavy but not in any way burdensome drums. And probably some vocals buried in there somewhere, too. That all somehow comes together at the end, no matter how many loose ends it took to get there.
The Butthole Surfers were a name I knew through skate magazines, but it was really when this friend let a Nirvana/Jesus Lizard split-single play through that my concept of music at that moment instantly flipped (it would’ve been more appropriate if it’d been a 45 instead of a CD). Just as I was hearing a Nirvana that was rougher and less produced than Nevermind (but more structurally sound than Bleach), I was hit right in the face with “Puss”.
Freehold (45 South 3rd St), located in south Williamsburg, is widely known as a freelancer’s oasis to get some work done while having a burger, taking a break to enjoy the large outdoor space and having a beer to close out the day. Or you can hit up Freehold to celebrate your friend’s birthday brunch or during one of their epic Halloween parties. But if you have caught a studio session, you probably know Freehold’s latest hit is as non-traditional music venue. Freehold Studio Sessions have been happening for more than a year, beginning with bands such as St. Lucia, that served as a sort of test to see how the space would work for live music. Once the Freehold folks realized that their space could work well as a music venue, it was important to event director Lydia Mazzolini, creative director Tony Pytleski and the rest of the team to keep bringing in quality bands to give Freeholders (their members) the gift of enjoying a great live show that would be rooted in community. They brought on Joey Garofalo of Beacon Events to book bands, and the rest is recent history. Continue reading →
Just in time to kick off Halloweekend, Boy Harsher held a sold-out record release show last Friday at Saint Vitus (1120 Manhattan Ave) to debut their new EP, “Country Girl.”
Toronto-based goth/industrial trio, Odonis Odonis, provided a foreboding start to the evening as they played from their latest album,No Pop. Perhaps in keeping with the smartphone-dystopian themes of the record, the band maintained an aloofness from the crowd throughout their set. Lead vocalist Dean Tzenos, whose sonorous voice was processed through a vocoder, came off as very reserved during his performance, which isn’t to say Odonis Odonis was dull. No Pop’s minimalist instrumentation, comprised solely of synths and an electronic drumkit, were spellbinding live, punctuated by Tzenos’ sparse screams. The trio sonically made up for what they lacked in charisma, filling Saint Vitus’ intimate space with heady waves of synth and echoing vocals.
When Halloween comes to town, so do the bands. This weekend was lined up with an insane number of fun shows to check out. I, personally, was able to enjoy two great ones at Brooklyn Steel (319 Frost Street). First one being Cypress Hill on Haunted Hill and then Primus the next night on Halloween.
When I first heard Cypress Hill was performing down the street it was a no brainer to check the show out. Being a weed enthusiast I thought I might even have a chance to hit their infamous giant bong. Sadly, there was no onstage bong, not even much of a stage setup at all. I figured a well-known act like Cypress Hill, who are only doing three Haunted Hill shows, might at least have a giant pumpkin (or even a small pumpkin!) smoking weed on stage, but sadly they didn’t. That being said…. I left this show stoned out of my gourd. I mean supreme dream.