Entries tagged with: Ben and Vesper
Ben + Vesper at Knitting Factory (more by Benjamin Lozovsky)
Four years removed from their debut All This Could Kill You, the New Jersey husband/wife duo Ben + Vesper welcomed their follow-up, Honors, this week via Sounds Familyre. Check out a pair of songs from that record, "Knee-Hi Wall" and "My Father's Eyes", downloadable above and streaming below. And while you're down there, make sure and check out the video for "My Father's Eyes" which you can watch for the first time here.
Ben + Vesper will, so far, celebrate the release with a limited run of dates. The weekend before Valentine's Day (Feb 11th, 12th) will see the couple take at two shows in North Carolina, and the band has reserved a date for NYC: February 28th at Zebulon with Aaron Roache.
In addition, Ben of Ben + Vesper directed a video for "Grow Up" by Sounds Familyre labelmate Danielson. The song (downloadable above/streaming below) is the first single from Danielson's forthcoming LP Best of Gloucester County due on 2/22 and featuring appearances from Jens Lekman, Emil Nikolaisen (Serena-Maneesh), Glen Galaxy (Soul-Junk), Mark Shippy (US Maple), and Chris Cohen (Cryptacize). Danielson has an NYC show of his own in the near future too. He'll bring the clan to NYC to play Le Poisson Rouge on March 25th. Tickets are on sale.
More details on that Danielson LP are below, alongside all tour dates, song streams, and videos.
photos by Ben Lozovsky
It doesn't' really matter who Daniel Smith plays with; whether its with his real family or indie all-stars (and protégés) like Sufjan Stevens and Yoni Wolf, the Danielson directive comes across loudly.
On Monday (3/8) at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, Smith's band was largely comprised of members from fellow tour-mates Ben & Vesper and Ortolan (Stevens was there, but only as a supporter). That reflected in the crisp and jazz-tinged renditions of standout tracks from Ships, which made up the majority of the Danielson set. There was still an endearingly petulant attitude to the music, especially during "Rubbernecker," an older punk-friendly number that saw Smith's ascending screech turn into a growl. Under Smith's helm, happiness grows a bite.
Slightly more tame were openers Ben & Vesper. They played an elegant, if not restrained, set filled with accordions and trumpet passages. Ortolan were fresh off their album release party the night before in Philadelphia, and used that enthusiasm to fend off any jitters during their performance. With soulful inklings and Motown girl-group aspirations, they performed tracks from their new Daniel Smith produced record, Time On A String, with titles too long they couldn't quite remember the full names. But it shows they have deeper thoughts that rise up throughout their youthful plaintiveness.
After this tour, Smith plans to finish up the near completed new Danielson album, recorded with members of his current band as well as some "special guests," as Smith promised after the show. Regardless of who shows up, it will most likely be the same beautiful tune.
Since the NYC show, the three bands toured to Texas and played SXSW.
"Daniel Smith's newest protege's are a four girl group called Ortolan. These are four fresh faced, small town hipsters who performed a set of quirky indie pop songs. Great harmonies with atonal elements and constantly shifting rhythms make this group compelling to hear. Though they claim a lead vocalist many of their songs feature dual lead vocals between the guitarist and keyboard player. At times they seemed surprised the SXSW crowed genuinely liked their music." [One21]Danielson played Beauty Bar on Wednesday night (3/17) at 11:15pm and then Daniel Smith came over to watch his friends Serena Maneesh play their (extra late) set at the official BrooklynVegan SXSW showcase at Club DeVille (they were supposed to go on at 1, but went on at 2). Daniel contributed backing vocals to their 2005 album self-titled album. Serena Maneesh contributed to the 2006 Danielson album Ships. Sufjan contributed to both of those.
No pics from Texas, but more pictures from Knitting Factory are below...
A Familyre Drive Spring 2010 Tour!!!The Sounds Familyre Records tour will kick of on March 7th in Philly and then make a New York City stop on Monday, March 8th at Knitting Factory. Tickets are on sale. It'll also be at SXSW. A tour poster is below.
Ben + Vesper, Ortolan, and Danielson will all be packin' the van and heading off to make musical merriment at the fine cities below! Come on out! All three bands will have just released or will be soon to release new records, so come hear some fantastic new material, as well as some old hits!
The NYC show will serve as a release party for Ben + Vesper's new "LuvInIdleness" EP.
Sounds Familyre put out Ortolan's selt-titled, debut EP last July. A track from that is above. Daniel Smith (aka Danielson) produced their first full-length, Time On A String, which will be coming out March 9th (one day after the KF show). More on the band (which is made up of three sisters and a sister-in-law), below.
In December, Danielson put out a single for the song "Moment Soakers." The video for that song, Ortolan tracklist and info, and all tour dates are below...
by Andrew Frisicano
DJ Scott Devendrof @ Sycamore
New Brooklyn bar Sycamore (1118 Cortelyou Rd) has begun booking shows. So far, there have been two gigs at the venue which is one of the only spaces for live music in Brooklyn's Ditmas Park neighborhood that is also home to Solo (formerly Cornerstone) and the troubled Vox Pop. Other nearby businesses include Mimi's Hummus, the Flatbush Food Coop and The Farm on Adderly, and if visiting, you can also walk around to see the many beautiful Victorian homes.
One of the two Sycamore shows so far was Hoferlanz (a.k.a. Benjamin Lanz who's played with The National, Beirut, Sufjan Stevens and My Brightest Diamond) with Sebastian Kruger (Inlets) on Thursday, March 26th.
The venue's third show happens tonight (4/8) with French guitarist Pedro Soler. Other acts on the developing schedule include Ecstatic Peace artist Hush Arbors on April 23rd (the gig "will be the first show [he's] done in New York since '05"), Sounds Familyre band Ben + Vesper on May 2nd, Nick Krgovich of No Kids on May 20th, and Asthmatic Kitty's Hermas Zopoula (video below) on June 12th. Full lineup below.
The flower shop by day, bar by night was recently featured on the cast-of-Hair-naked cover of Time Out NY. Scott Devendorf of the National, a band who has more than one member living in that neighborhood, frequently DJ's at the bar (as you can see in the picture above).
Neighborhood blog Flashbush Vegan (no relation) describes the look of the bar at its opening in September '08:
Patrons enter through the cute flower shop, where a few stools provide a quiet drinking spot and a neat lookout on Cortelyou Road. A jukebox sits at the entrance of the bar and in the back are two cozy horseshoe-shaped couches tucked into the corners. The inside was so jam packed that we had to step outside to their beautiful garden, which has received quite an overhaul since the days of Cortelyou Vintage. Ivy covers three of the walls and there's a large wood patio that steps down into a pebble-covered area with more seating and even a stand-alone cast iron fireplace. We couldn't help but feel a little sorry for the neighbors, though, whose windows and terraces overlook the bar's garden. Maybe they can get a few free drinks every now and then.Shows at Sycamore take place in a separate area, affectionately called the "whiskey cellar" with a stage and none of the noise from the bar. Jessica, the venue's show booker, told us, "We're starting slowly, to be sure everything is done right. The goal is about 3 to 4 shows a week, and in general, to feature one artist/evening [which they can] do whatever they want with --- this could mean longer, relaxed sets, trying out new material, inviting 'special guests,' tap-dancing, juggling..."
Full lineup, and a video of Hermas Zopoula playing in his yard in Burkina Faso, below...