Entries tagged with: ILLUMNTR
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: METZ - Headache (MP3)
As mentioned before and worth doing so again, Toronto's METZ are on tour and in town, with two chances to see them in NYC: tonight (8/31) at Pianos with Birds & Batteries, Writer and ILLUMNTR (tickets); and then Saturday (9/1) at Death by Audio with Pop. 1280 and Herzog Rising. Updated tour dates are listed at the bottom of this post.
METZ's debut album for Sub Pop is due out October 9 and jettisons through 11 songs in under a half an hour and does a surprisingly good job of bringing the band's propulsive, concussive live energy to tape. There's a big dose of AmRep style punk, but there's a hooky-ness to the white squall. Still, it's no match for their live show which is intense and frighteningly loud. Sometimes sheer volume is needed for that crushing feeling in your chest, not your ears. (Earplugs are suggested, unless you wanna fast-track tinnitus.) You can download "Headache" at the top of this post.
For tonight's show, METZ are on one of the earlier slots. You could probably slip out afterwords and still make it to Italian glampunks Giuda's set down the street at Cake Shop, which would make for a pretty fun night.
A list of all tour dates and an album teaser video are below.
by Andrew Sacher
Alt-J at Mercury Lounge - 8/6/12 (via BrooklynVegan Instagram)
Towards the end of UK 4-piece Alt-J's set at Mercury Lounge in NYC last night (8/6), singer/guitarist Joe Newman took a slightly extended pause in the quiet turning point of "Breezeblocks," before pounding drums entered and most of the crowd (at least the front half) gave raucous cheers, danced, and sang along to the ending refrain, "Please don't go, please don't go/I love you so, I love you so." It was the most impacting point of the show, but the energy was not unmatched throughout the set. The crowd seemed to know all the words to most of the songs and the band couldn't have been more appreciative. They thanked us multiple times and seemed genuinely surprised at the positive reaction, given that it was only their second time in New York -- for their first, they were the opening band at Mercury Lounge, last night was their first of two sold out headlining shows here this week -- and that their debut album, An Awesome Wave, is not even out on our side of the Atlantic yet (it's due out 9/18 via Canvasback).
The band members are all skilled musicians, an aspect that isn't usually too crucial in the indie world, but instead of being show-offy or overplaying, they use it to create compelling pop songs. But the most impressive part of Alt-J's sound is how strikingly original they are. In a decade where most emerging indie bands have immediate ties to past eras of music, Alt-J's sound is pretty unprecedented. There are a few reference points -- the complex rhythms of Radiohead, vocal punch of Klaxons/Foals/Maccabees, and a bit of Mumford & Sons harmonies -- but mostly it's hard to compare them to anything. Other high points in their set came when they nailed the falsettos in the mid-section of "Dissolve Me" (I think I saw one girl in the crowd let out a relieving "yes!" right afterwards) and it was hard to find someone not singing and dancing to the choruses of "Something Good," "Fitzpleasure," and "Matilda." When the silent rests of "Ms" were met by talking and laughter from the crowd, it showed they've got a ways to go if they want to be silencing rooms James Blake style, but these boys are definitely going places and they're well worth a listen if you haven't already.
Alt-J will play another sold out show tonight (8/7) at Glasslands) with Mon Khmer and SoftSpot and will return to NYC on their larger fall tour which hits Bowery Ballroom on September 12. Tickets for that show are still available.
The show began with a solid opening set from Brooklyn's Illumntr, whose vocal harmony pop is very post-Grizzly Bear/Yeasayer, but enjoyable nonetheless. The strongest song in their set was their new single, "Tangled with Bear," which you can download (name your price) at their bandcamp. You can catch them again in NYC with METZ at Pianos on August 31 (tickets).
We didn't have a photographer at last night's show, but a few iPhone pics and Alt-J's setlist are below...
DOWNLOAD: ILLUMNTR - "Gulf Hymn" (MP3)
ARMS at Mercury Lounge in 2011 (more by Jessica Amaya)
ARMS, who played Glasslands last night (1/25) with Wintersleep, and whose frontman Todd Goldstein opens for John Roderick at Mercury Lounge this week (1/28), also just announced that they'll play Mercury Lounge on February 28. The show is with Glass Ghost and tickets are on AmEx presale and go on public sale Friday (1/27).
Speaking of Hospitality, they also open 2 NYC shows for Tennis, one of which was just announced and on AmEx presale.
ARMS used to be somewhat of a side project for Todd whose bigger gig was playing guitar in Harlem Shakes (RIP). The full ARMS band consists of Todd, tlacael, matty, and dave. Tlaceal and Matty also play in the Brooklyn-based band ILLUMNTR (pronounced Illuminator). They recently released a PBR&B leaning single called "Gulf Hymn." You can grab that song at the top of this post and stream it below. They've got a hometown show coming up at Pianos on February 25 with El Topo (aka Dave Harrington of Darkside/Nicolas Jaar), Thunder & Lightning, and a Dave Harrington DJ set.
Nicolas Jaar has two NYC shows coming up too.
ILLUMNTR stream and all Glass Ghost dates below...