photos by Chris La Putt
"Friday night's double bill at Bowery Ballroom was hard to beat. Toronto's Basia Bulat played a rootsy solo set, accompanying her powerful, penetrating vibrato with fierce autoharp and guitar. A real talent; here's hoping she brings her full band the next time she comes to town.The good news is that Bowery Ballroom did sell out on Friday night, though it wasn't as packed as your usual sold out show (so still a bit of a crime). She's recognized by everyone from Sufjan Stevens to David Byrne, and she consistently blows away audiences every time she shows up (for instance at Dark Was The Night). She even has the ability to sell out Bowery Ballroom, but I think Shara Worden still may be one of the most underrated voices in NYC.
My Brightest Diamond, playing their first NYC show in over a year, took a more high-concept approach, filling the stage with white ladders and balloons; a young girl passed out balloon animals during intermission. Lead singer Shara Worden, who's been spending more and more time following pseudo-classical pursuits, was a commanding stage presence with her flamboyant attire and voice of operatic proportions. (Worden studied voice at the University of North Texas before being seduced by the rock siren.) Oh, and she played lead guitar, joined by Nathan Lithgow on bass and Brian Wolfe on drums.
Why this show (at $15 a ticket) had tickets available at the door while that talentless harpie managed to sell out four nights at Radio City says a lot about the state of our brainless culture."
[Feast of Music]
I ran to see My Brightest Diamond after the Dawn Landes show, and before I went back to Mercury Lounge to see an after midnight set by Serena Maneesh. Before running back to Mercury we asked Shara if she wanted to play at Music Hall on Saturday. The rest is history.
For Basia Bulat, Bowery Ballroom was her 2nd NYC show in two days. Her schedule also included a record release show at Professor Thom's on Thursday.
More pictures from Bowery Ballroom below...
My Brightest Diamond