Entries tagged with: Seaport Music Festival
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
Protomartyr / Alvvays @ Seaport Music Fest 7/11/2014
Back up to a robust eight weeks of live music, the 2014 Seaport Music Festival kicked off this past Friday (7/11) with a strong, if disparate, double bill of Canadian guitar poppers Alvvays and Detroit's fiery Protomartyr as headliners. With Pier 17 under heavy renovation (along with half of that area -- the mall has been razed) the action now happens on Fulton St where they lay astroturf over the pavement, making for a relaxed environment. Seeing Protomartyr -- who have strong, funny opinions on a variety of things, lyrically -- play against the backdrop of the financial center seemed right. It was a great night.
This Friday (7/18) is Canada's Calvin Love and locals Las Rosas. More pics of Protomartyr and Alvvays below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
UMO @ Seaport Music Festival, 6/28/2013
The 2013 Seaport Music Festival came to a close on Friday (6/28) with its biggest show (and crowd) of the season: Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Bass Drum of Death, who were making the penultimate stop on their tour together. UMO brought their damp Portland hometown weather with them, as it spat rain all evening. It was never enough to really warrant an umbrella (despite a few in the crowd using them), though, and I thought it felt good as muggy as it was on Friday (very).
The show started earlier than usual, as Mississipi's Bass Drum of Death were already into their set when I arrived a little before 7 PM. These guys pretty much stick to rippers live -- a similar style to Ty Segall's poppier side -- and I thought they sounded terrific. I'm more familiar with their debut than this year's self-titled release, so songs like "GB City" and "Heart Attack Kid" from the former stuck with me a little more.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra have been touring for most of this year and are a pretty tight unit. They know their way around a hook, playing the bulk of their catchiest material, like "The Opposite of Afternoon" and "Swim and Sleep" both of which sounded much fuller than their album versions. They also had the pasta pot on full boil, extending the songs with more noodling than is to my personal taste. But that skill came in handy when they came back for an encore performing a killer version of Can's "Vitamin C."
It was a big weekend for the Seaport, as Village Voice's 4Knots Festival was the next day and pictures from that are coming soon. More pics from UMO and BDoD are below.
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
Fear of Men @ Seaport Music Festival 6/21/2013
UK indiepop quartet Fear of Men flew over to NYC just to play the Summer Solstice edition (6/21) of this year's Seaport Music Festival. After two Fridays of dodgy weather, you coudn't have asked for a nicer night, and Fear of Men's gentle jangle was the perfect accompaniment. In addition to their own songs, their set included a cover of The Chills' 1984 classic, "Pink Frost," which is always welcome to hear. Local synth-rock duo Writer opened the show, and pictures of both bands are in this post.
The Seaport is definitely different since Hurricane Sandy put much of the area underwater last fall. Pizzeria Uno, with its popular restroom facility, is gone and the boardwalk has been rezoned, restricting the places you can have an open beer a bit. On the plus side: Smorgasburg food vendors are there every day on Front Street in the cobblestone area just off Fulton.
The Seaport Music Festival wraps up its short run this Friday (6/28) with their biggest show of the season: Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Bass Drum of Death which is free and open to the public. Then the next day is the Village Voice 4Knots Festival, with Kurt Vile, The Men, Marnie Stern, Parquet Courts, White Lung and more. That is also free and open to the public.
More pictures from Friday below...
by Bill Pearis
White Fence in Berlin last year (photo by Alexandre Kurek via)
With this weekend's weather forecast looking slightly more hopeful than last's, we should get our first proper Seaport Music Festival show at South Street Seaport's Pier 17 on Friday (6/14). We already knew PAWS were playing but they've just announced that White Fence will be headlining. PAWS are at 7 PM, White Fence play at 8 PM and, like all shows at Pier 17, it's free and open to the public.
As mentioned, White Fence are here for the Northside Festival, playing twice. First, the Panache Showcase on Thursday (6/13) at Brooklyn Bowl with Mac DeMarco and Walter TV. Advance tickets are sold out but there will be limited admission at the door, as well as admitting Northside badges. Then they play a late show Friday at Knitting Factory with Las Rosas and Honey. 11 PM doors for that show and advance tickets are on sale.
White Fence's latest album is Cyclops Reap which is out on Castle Face and can be streamed via Rdio or Spotify. If you've only ever heard White Fence via their (mostly) low-fi recordings, their live show is a different thing altogether. Band guru Tim Presley assembles a usually killer band for much more of a White Fence Rock Experience. Worth catching.
Updated White Fence tour dates are listed below.
by Bill Pearis
Hanni El Khatib
About a month ago San Francisco's Hanni El Khatib released his second album, Head in the Dirt, on Innovative Leisure. The record was produced by the Black Keys' Dan Auerbach and puts an enjoyably pop spin on garage-soul. You can check out the video for new single "Penny" below.
Hanni El Khatib will be touring this fall with Innovative Leisure labelmates Bass Drum of Death, including two stops in NYC: Bowery Ballroom on October 11 and Knitting Factory on October 12. Tickets for Bowery Ballroom on on AmEx presale on Wednesday (6/12) at noon with the general sale on Friday (6/14) at noon. Tickets for Knitting Factory go on sale Friday at 10 AM. All dates are listed below.
Bass Drum of Death, meanwhile, are about to head out on tour with Unknown Mortal Orchestra. When we first mentioned that tour, BDoD weren't billed to open UMO's free NYC show at Seaport Music Festival on June 28, but they've since been added to that. Their tour also includes two headlining NYC shows in July which happen on July 8 at Shea Stadium (tickets) and July 9 at Glasslands (tickets). BDoD's new self-titled sophomore album will be out June 25. You can stream a track from that and check out their updated tour schedule below.
The Oblivians @ Knitting Factory, 2010 (more by Andrew Friscano)
The Seaport Music Festival already announced that Unknown Mortal Orchestra would be playing on June 28 and they've recently announced a couple more dates on the schedule. Memphis garage legends The Oblivians will play with their Goner labelmates Ex-Cult on June 7. And then on June 21, jangly UK indie pop quartet Fear of Men will play. No opener has been announced for that show yet. All Seaport Music Festival shows are free and all-ages.
More shows are still to be announced. Also happening at Pier 17 at the Seaport is Village Voice's 4Knots Music Fest which happens June 29 with headliners Kurt Vile & the Violators, plus The Men, Parquet Courts, and Marnie Stern and more TBA.
As you may remember, South Street Seaport was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy, taking out most of shops on the brick street area down there which also suffered heavy looting, and most of those storefronts are still empty. (The mall is open, though.) Seaport Music, the label, are putting out a compilation album titled Anchored & Amped and 100% of the sales going to Seaport area businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy. The record includes exclusive tracks from Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, The Wedding Present, Wire, Savoir Adore and more It will be available on June 4 via local record stores and at Seaport Music Festival shows.
photos by Jonathon Bernstein
UMO/Foxygen @ Bowery Ballroom, 2/28/2013
There must be something about having the word Foxy in the name of your band (see Foxy Shazam) that has a requirement of the lead singer acting completely nuts on stage. The 5 piece indie rock band from Agoura Hills (shout out to my Cali peeps) played for just about an hour and their music has elements of folk, alternative and lots of psychedelia! Lead singer Sam France walked out on stage with a pimp jacket and Indiana Jones type stetson hat (which you can see a clearer picture of after the jump) and danced/freaked out all over the stage as distorted vocals came pouring out through his mic...Uknown Mortal Orchestra and Foxygen's tour with Wampire hit NYC this past Thursday (2/28) with a very sold-out show at Bowery Ballroom and pictures from that show are in this post. It will be much easier to get into UMO next NYC show which is a free one at Pier 17 at South Street Seaport on June 28. It's the first announced show of this year's Seaport Music Festival, which we are happy to see returning after the devestation Hurricane Sandy wreaked on the area. No openers announced yet, so stay tuned.
... It appeared that the crowd was there to see Foxygen based on the reaction to their music, but everyone stayed and loved UMO equally as much. They performed largely in the dark, though back lit by those candles that have little battery operated flames in them. - [According2G]
In related news, for those heading to Austin for SXSW Interactive or Film (or showing up early for the music portion), Seaport Music Fest, Panache Booking and Hot Burrito are putting on Bruise Cruise show on Lady Bird Lake with Milk Music, Fat Tony, The Blind Shake and Outer Minds. Details are here and the flyer is below...
Front St. on Monday evening (via @iggsactly)
Lower Manhattan got it pretty good by Sandy, South Street Seaport included. The area was under multiple feet of water. The Seaport Music Festival, who put on the free shows down there, still had their stage set up. Some gear was ruined though they luckily had taken down the deck, lights, tent and canopy in preparation for the hurricane. No word on how the Beekman Beer Garden fared, though one Tweeter fears it is "definitely gone". Wine store Pasanella and Son was reportedly "decimated". Sadly, there has also been some looting at the Seaport's shops.
At a press conference this afternoon, Mayor Bloomberg, who recently confirmed at least 18 Sandy related deaths in NYC, announced that like the subways (Buses start returning tonight [10/30]), it may be three or four more days before power is restored to the tons of residents who lost it due to Hurricane Sandy. This includes all of lower Manhattan where, as you know, a whole lot of Manhattan music venues are. Which probably means no shows till the weekend for Pianos, Cake Shop, The Living Room, Arlene's Grocery, Fontana's, Rockwood Music Hall, The Slipper Room, Mercury Lounge, Bowery Ballroom, Santos Party House, Le Poisson Rouge and others.
Good news, apart from no power, the Ludlow St. area venues all came out ok, with folks at Pianos, Cake Shop and Arlene's Grocery specifically saying there was no water damage. Williamsburg clubs, are getting somewhat back to normal sooner, with shows at Union Pool and Glasslands tonight.
Elsewhere, Park Slope/Gowanus's Bell House reports that they "had some minimal flooding but will be back to business as usual by tomorrow. Working on fundraiser ideas for you now " Bar 4 in Park Slope lost their awning.
One night before the 4Knots Music Festival too over the space, fire included, it was the last Seaport Music Festival show of the year on Friday (7/13), a nice, if low-key affair (part of the River to River Festival) with Fiery Furnace Eleanor Friedberger. With no new album to plug, Friedberger seemed pretty relaxed and jovial, playing mostly songs off last year's great Last Summer with added pizaz from sax player Robbie Lee.
The undercard slot went to Ex Cops who were just teriffic, I thought, with a sound that's some where between New Zealand 1985 and London/Manchester 1992, and great songs like their Other Music debut single "You Are a Lion, I Am a Lamb" and a few that I hadn't heard before. The band can really play too. Looking forward to their first album, which is due out this fall.
I didn't catch that much of Zambri's opening set, but am a fan of all things slinky, tribal and gothy and have enjoyed their shows in the past.
In addition to more pictures of all three bands below, you can also check out video performances from Friday night's show.
by Bill Pearis
Veronica Falls at MHOW in February (more by Amanda Hatfield)
As mentioned, Veronica Falls and Peoples Temple are tonight's attractions at the South Street Seaport as part of the River to River Festival which happens tonight (6/29) at 6PM and is free. Both bands most recent albums made my Favorite albums of 2011 list. Veronica Falls:
"Found Love in a Graveyard" made my Favorite Tracks of 2009 list and have been waiting a full-length ever since. The band does not disappoint. There's not a dud in Veronica Falls' 36 minute running time. New songs are equals to early singles which appear here in newly recorded versions that might actually improve on the originals. This is haunted pop, a brisk October breeze that calls for a nice cardigan.The UK band won't need a cardigan tonight. The band's new single "My Heart Beats" is the band's sunniest song yet and you can watch the video (co-directed by former Cause Co-Motion-er Alex Curtain) at the bottom of this post. Veronica Falls, who were last here in February, are great live too.
As for Lansing, MI's The People's Temple, their album Sons of Stone is a big heavy slam of tuneful '60s-style psych rock. (You can stream it via Spotify widget below.) The band really knocked me back when I saw them at Death by Audio back in April. If you like Nuggets and early (catchy) BJM, you'll dig The Peoples Temple.
There are bands playing after Veronica Falls at Skippers' tiki bar (behind and to the right of the Seaport Stage) but they haven't announced yet who's playing tonight. It's free. It's also where the second stage at 4Knots Festival is happening.
Next Friday (7/6), the River to River Festival continues at the Seaport with Patrick Watson and Loney Dear. The Veronica Falls video and The Peoples Temple video and album stream are below.
Slowdance at Le Poisson Rouge, Sept. 2011 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Friday (6/22) marks the first of this year's Seaport Music Festival shows down at Pier 17 with Portland's Miracle's Club. The theatrical disco revelers have just released a new compilation called Ecstacy which features "15 new tracks from our friends and collaborators across the globe." You can stream it below.
Slowdance just released a new single, "Boyfriend," which came out via White Iris earlier this month which is an airy, danceable summmer type single if I ever heard one. I'm actually kind of partial to the b-side, "Airports," which drives along with a motorik chug and French lyrics. Both sides are streamable below. This is Slowdance's only upcoming show.
Weeknight, meanwhile, seem to have been together not very long at all. (Their Facebook page is about a month old.) The duo, who only go by their first names (Holly and Andy) make drum machine and twang lonesome West type music not that far off from more recent Raveonettes. You can stream a few tracks at the bottom of this post. Weeknight are also playing July 14 at Cameo.
by Bill Pearis
Habibi at NYC Popfest 2012 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Habibi, Eternal Summers, Caged Animals and Ski Lodge will be this year's lineup for the third Sound Bites series which will take place Sunday afternoons in August at the Fulton Stall Market by South Street Seaport... which I curate. (Shameless plug). There will be a DJ (probably me) at 2PM with the bands playing at 3PM and it's all free. The schedule is this:
August 5: HabibiHabibi will be opening for King Tuff for a few dates, including the show at 285 Kent on June 9. The band have also just made their first music video, "Tomboy," which you can watch below and features guest appearance by some other bands you may recognize.
August 12: Eternal Summers
August 19: Caged Animals
August 26: Ski Lodge
Eternal Summers, meanwhile, just announced a late show at Mercury Lounge on July 26 which is most likely a record release show for their fantastic new album Correct Behavior (one of my favorites of 2012 so far) which is out July 24. Check out the video for "Millions" at the bottom of this post. Tickets go on sale Friday, June 8. No openers listed yet.
Caged Animals, meanwhile, just released a video for a new song, "This Summer I'll Make it Up To You," which is off their This Summer EP which is out June 12 on Lucky Number. Caged Animals are also playing Saturday (6/2) at Bobby Redd Project Space in Bushwick with Kent Odessa, Bright Future, Sagopalm and The Zabalas.
And Ski Lodge are next playing Pianos on June 13 with Cool Serbia, The Hudson Branch and new Kanine Records signing Beach Day. Ski Lodge also have a new video for "A Game" which you can watch below. Their debut album will be out later this year.
Tour dates for Habibi and Eternal Summers, and videos for all four bands, are below.
by Bill Pearis
Titus Andronicus' Patrick Stickles in the crowd at 4Knots 2011 (more)
While no bands have been mentioned yet, The Village Voice have announced the 4Knots Music Festival will return to Pier 17 at South St. Seaport for a second year: Saturday, July 14 is this year's date of the festival that has taken the place of the Coney Island Siren Festival (RIP). Says the Voice:
"We're thrilled about the return of the 4Knots Music Festival this summer," commented Village Voice publisher Josh Fromson. "Last year's inaugural event was a massive success and we've got a great deal of special things in store for this summer. Make sure to circle July 14th on your social calendar because it's going to be a great day of music at the Seaport."Last year, 4Knots had The Black Angels, Davilla 666, Oberhofer and more.
The 4Knots Music Festival will feature renowned and emerging artists from today's music scene performing live all day in front of what is sure to be yet again an extremely large and enthusiastic audience. A full lineup of the day's events will be announced in coming weeks.
No word yet on this summer's Seaport Music Festival, though it will be back. (As will the Sound Bites Summer Series curated, full-disclosure, by me.) Hudson River Rocks, though, have announced their schedule which includes the just-added DIIV in addition to Grimes, Wild Nothing, Dan Deacon, Oberhofer, and more .
The band-less flyer for 4Knots Music Festival is below.
by Bill Pearis
The Feelies on 4th of July (more by Jason Bergman)
If you're not skipping town for an ocean view, there is no shortage of great music options this weekend.
Independence Day Weekend means The Feelies at Maxwells and tickets are still available for all three shows: Friday (7/02), Saturday (7/03), and Sunday (7/04). The excitement of their 2008 reunion might have faded a bit, but the music has not. The influence of these New Jersey legends can be heard all over releases from Woodsist and Underwater Peoples and their four albums are all worth owning. The first three -- Crazy Rhythms, The Good Earth and Only Life -- are back in print, the first two on vinyl.
If you've seen their Maxwell's shows before, you know they play epic sets, peppered with choice covers and extended instrumental sections. I hesitate to call it jamming, probably because I like when they do it, but also because it's that interplay between Glen Mercer and Bill Million where The Feelies really come alive. As good as their records are if you haven't seen them live, you've never really heard The Feelies.
The Seaport Music Festival has it's first show on Friday, a double-dose of Texas with Woven Bones and YellowFever. Yes, both bands were here recently (and Woven Bones play tonight, more on that in a minute) but there are several advantages to Friday's show. The Seaport is a great place to see a show, the setting spectacular, especially at sunset. You can drink where you please, it's generally chill, and, most importantly, it's free.
I also think Woven Bones' fuzz-driven scuzz rock is gonna sound amazing through a really big PA. I've only seen them in tiny clubs where the sound doesn't do them justice. What the band lacks in diversity of material, they make up for in being really good at that one thing they do and the louder the better. Seaport sound guy: turn it up.
I've seen YellowFever on big stages and small, and they pretty much are great wherever they are. I just wish they'd get around to writing and recording some new songs. "Making it" has never seemed to be a priority to these two, which is part of their charm, but can also be a bit maddening for fans. There is a new tour EP, according to their MySpace, so let's hope that's actually some fresh tunes. And the band are about to embark on a pretty big tour so maybe we're entering a new era of YellowFever productivity. All YF tourdates are at the bottom of this post.
In addition to the bands, the Lone Star state theme continues at the Seaport this weekend with something called Texas on Tour. They were setting up on Wednesday while I was down there for the last of the Sound Bites Lunchtime shows (yes I have worked with the Seaport folks so, you know, full disclosure) and it looks like some sort of Texas-themed traveling carnival, including a water ride for kids and one of those domed theaters. Yee haw?
This weekend also marks the debut of a new monthly party that Captured Tracks is putting on at Bruar Falls. The label is becoming a real contender with great debuts from Wild Nothing and Beach Fossils, as well as new signings like London's Veronica Falls, Spain's Aias, and locals MINKS who'll play Captured Tracks Night 001, as Saturday is being billed. No doubt MINKS' debut single, "Funeral Song," owes a bit to the Cure but, as I've said before, the band are much sunnier sounding live (despite all six members wearing black every time I've seen them). Take away the vocal effects on "Funeral Song" and add some female backing, as it does live, and the song moves over to early New Order territory. Compare and contrast the live and recorded versions -- video of the live version shot during the Northside Festival is at the bottom of this post.
Other songs, the names of which I don't know, while still '80s-ish, are even more poppy, with nods to early records on Creation and Cherry Red. The one unreleased song I really like I shot video of back when they opened for Veronica Falls at Glasslands (also below), which reminds me a lot of Felt. MINKS have played the same short set all three times I've seen them, but I like all six (five? seven?) songs they do and will be there a fourth time on Saturday.
In addition to MINKS, label domo Mike Sniper will be sharing the decks with Peggy from Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and there'll be a merch table with a wide variety of C/T releases, including a mix tape exclusive to this night. Entry is $5.
A few more shows, night by night:
THURSDAY, JULY 1
I mentioned above that Woven Bones are playing tonight. The show is at Bruar Falls and it's part of a killer line-up also featuring The Beets and Beach Fossils. Any one of those bands might be enough to get you to the show. All three, it's hard to pass up. Beach Fossils were great when they played with Wild Nothing a couple weeks back. If you haven't picked up their album on Captured Tracks, it's highly recommended.
Over at sister venue Cake Shop, Nobunny will be taking off most everything except that mask, which gets grosser looking every time I see them play. Does he ever wash that thing? Also playing are fellow Bay Area residents Apache who will also play Don Pedro's on Friday (7/2) and the Delancey on Saturday (7/3).
Knitting Factory is hosting another one of those Scion Garage shows, this time with Memphis legends The Oblivions who reformed last year. The show, which is free, is also RSVP'd out, unfortunately if this is the first you're hearing of it.
Big Troubles play Cameo Gallery. These guys are giant fans of '90s shoegaze and will talk your ear off about Revolver and Drop Nineteens if you let them. It comes through in their music which they do a great job of putting their own spin on that era's sonics. Their new 7" on Old English Spelling Bee is really good and look for their debut album sometime in the not too distant future. They're playing this night with a bunch of bands I've never heard of, including Slothbear (sludgepop), No Demons Here (K records style cassette hiss), and Gross Relations (whose Myspace songs sound pretty good).
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: The Elves of Heaven - This Christmas (MP3)
The folks behind the Seaport Music Festival have started a record label, Seaport Music Records, and have just released their first single -- a holiday-themed song from The Elves of Heaven which is basically Dublin musician Martin Clancy.
Martin became known to us through UK label Fingerlickin' Records and a project we worked together on this past June at the Seaport with the Brooklyn Philharmonic.The first song is a pretty catchy little number, better than your average indie xmas tune, very much in the JAMC/Phil Spector mold. You can download it at the top of this post. Seaport Music Record's second release will be an actual 7" single from Brooklyn band Loose Limbs, 2010 TBD, so keep an eye out.
Martin will be our very first "artist in residence" and over the course of the next few months, you'll be hearing tons of stuff from him.