photos by Chris La Putt; words by Bill Pearis
CHVRCHES @ Mercury Lounge, 3/18/2013
Hot off a busy SXSW, Scottish trio CHVRCHES made their NYC debut at Mercury Lounge last night (3/18), playing an early and a late show, both sold out. I was at the early show where the crowd was ready to have a good time. Good news: "The Mother We Share" and new single "Recover" are not the only catchy songs in their arsenal. We got 10 originals (plus a cover of Prince's "I Would Die 4 U") and nearly every one of them had a giant hook at its core. I would say at least four of the new ones seems single-worthy.
The bad news: they've got a ways to go in the live show department. Singer Lauren Mayberry's voice was in fine form, but she is a timid performer and doesn't quite seem comfortable in the spotilight. (A funny and foulmouthed between-song banterer, though.) And, like with so many synth-MPC acts these days, there's not a lot to watch. That said, they weren't bad. They just just need to build up the confidence and figure out the live setup. Like a drummer? Six months of touring, including the summer festival circuit will hopefully take care of that. But the crowd last night -- which hit all social and age strata -- didn't seem to mind, with very enthusiastic singing, dancing and clapping along to the band's two singles.
UPDATE: They're playing live tonight too. Says the band, "Hi New Yorkers. We will be playing a 30 min live set tonight at 285 Kent in Brooklyn along with a DJ set from Martin. We will be on at midnight. " Tickets here.
I missed almost all of opener Dan Croll's set but what I heard was in the "whoa-oh" and "ahhhh ahh" heavy Fleet Foxes school of folky rock. The UK singer plays again on Wednesday (3/20) at Glasslands with Feathers and Lorna Dune. Tickets are still available.
More pictures from the early show at Mercury Lounge, including some of Dan Croll, below...