Entries tagged with: Wye Oak
photos by Amanda Hatfield, words by Andrew Sacher
EL VY / Wye Oak / Julien Baker @ Bowery Ballroom - 11/13/15
EL VY released their debut album Return to the Moon at the tail-end of last month via 4AD, and their tour in support of it hit NYC this past weekend for sold-out shows at Bowery Ballroom on Friday (11/13) and Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday (11/14). The band is led by Matt Berninger (who fronts The National) and Brent Knopf (who fronts Ramona Falls and used to be in Menomena), and they were joined by drummer Andy Stack (of their tourmates Wye Oak), backup vocalist Moorea Masa (who also sings on their album), and another guitarist/bassist. Brent is the band's multi-instrumentalist and he switched around a lot from keyboards to acoustic guitar to electric. And Matt Berninger was as distinctly Matt Berninger as ever, doing Matt Berninger things like quickly going from standing still and somberly singing to screaming and thrashing around the stage and slamming his mic to the ground. Now that he's a guy who's headlined Barclays Center, it was a treat to see him up close and personal. As for the setlist, they played all of Return to the Moon and also covered Fine Young Cannibals "She Drives Me Crazy" (which they've been doing the whole tour), which got a good portion of the crowd singing.
Wye Oak provided direct support, with a set that leaned pretty equally on their more rocking material and the poppier sounds they explored on last year's Shriek. As they always do, they sounded super full considering they're just a two piece. And speaking of sounding full with a small stage setup, Julien Baker, the young Memphis singer/songwriter who opened both NYC shows, sounded really great with nothing more than her voice and clean electric guitar. Her debut album only just came out (via 6131) but it's clear that she's already a super confident performer. A lot of her stuff is somber and introverted, but she could really belt it when she wanted to. The shows with EL VY were just two of her three NYC shows this weekend. She also played a late show at Mercury Lounge with Eliott Brood on Saturday (Mina Tindle was supposed to open the MHOW show but had to cancel).
If you haven't yet, read our interview with EL VY. More pictures from Bowery below...
by Andrew Sacher
Twenty-year-old Memphis singer/songwriter Julien Baker fronts the band Forrister (fka The Star Killers), and as of last week she's got a solo record out in the world called Sprained Ankle. It's on 6131 Records, which is mostly known for releasing punk music (like Touche Amore and Joyce Manor's first albums), but punk this is not. Most of the record has Julien's voice and clean electric guitar in the forefront, only backed here and there by some sparse drumming or keyboard textures (and one song, "Everybody Does," is acoustic). And if "singer/songwriter from Memphis" makes you think you're getting something indebted to country or early rock n' roll, it's not that either. It's also nothing like the '70s soft-rock of Matthew E. White, whose Spacebomb Studio is the place Julien recorded Sprained Ankle. It's the kind of sad, emotive, singer-with-a-guitar music that you can imagine fans of Jenny Lewis and Conor Oberst latching onto. You can stream the whole album and watch the video for the title track below.
Julien has a few shows coming up, including two in NYC. One is opening for The National/Menomena side project EL VY and Wye Oak at Bowery Ballroom on November 13. That show is long sold out, but if you have tickets this is a great reason to get there early. The next night, she opens for Canadian alt-country trio Elliott Brood at Mercury Lounge (11/14). Tickets for that one are on sale now. All of Julien's dates are listed below.
That Bowery show is one of two EL VY / Wye Oak shows in NYC. The other is at MHOW the next night with French art pop artist Mina Tindle opening (also sold out). Her newest album Parades came out last year and you can stream that and watch a video from it below too.
photo: The National at Barclays Center in 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Although The National haven't released an album since 2013's Trouble Will Find Me, they've had a very busy two years. They premiered their documentary, Mistaken for Strangers, last year at the Tribeca Film Festival and toured the US and Europe. Frontman Matt Berninger also recently formed a band with ex-Menomena member / Ramona Falls frontman Brent Knopf called EL VY and they're releasing their debut LP, Return to the Moon, on October 30 via 4AD. Berninger spoke to Rolling Stone yesterday about EL VY and also mentioned that The National's seventh album is being worked on:
We're working on a record. We're collecting all the ideas. Those guys are coming out to California for a week. We're in the anything-goes, fun phase of that. That's happening, but no idea when.The National recently debuted a new song called "Roman Candle" during their set at a Los Angeles benefit show for non-profit Cooperative Education, which was co-founded by Berninger's cousins, Joe and Jeff Berninger. A few days later, they performed the song at Treasure Island Music Festival under the title "Checking Out." Before playing it, Berninger said, "It was called something else yesterday. Today it's called 'Checking Out.' Tomorrow, nobody knows." We'll have to wait until their pre-NYE shows in Aspen to see if it changes once again. For now, a video of the band performing it is below.
The National's only date besides those Aspen shows is an Australian festival in 2016, and they probably aren't adding much more for a while considering EL VY begin their tour in November. Since we last spoke, Wye Oak (whose drummer Andy Stack is in EL VY's live lineup) were added as support to select dates on that tour, including the NYC shows on 11/13 at Bowery Ballroom and 11/14 at MHOW. Both of those are sold out.
In other National-related news, guitarist Bryce Dessner joined German musician Alva Noto and Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto in creating the score for Academy Award-winning director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu's upcoming film, The Revenant. The film will be released on January 8. You can watch the trailer below.
In even more related news, the other Dessner (Aaron) and Justin Vernon announced their second annual Eaux Claires Music & Arts Festival today.
Watch the video of The National's performance of "Roman Candle" aka "Checking Out" and check out the EL VY/Wye Oak tour dates below...
Shearwater are back with a new album, Jet Plane and Oxbow, which will be out via Sub Pop on January 22. Frontman Jonathan Meiburg and producer/engineer Reisch (the team behind 2012's Animal Joy and 2014's loose covers/collaborations LP, Fellow Travelers) spent two years working on the record which features contributions from film composer Brian Reitzell (Hannibal), Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner, drummer Cully Symington, Howard Draper, Lucas Oswald, Jesca Hoop, and Abram Shook. You can check out the anthemic, Bowie-esque first single "Quiet Americans" -- and check out the album's tracklist -- below.
Preorders are available now and come with an early access to a stream of the album (released about a month prior to the LP), as well as a podcast featuring demos and a conversation between Meiburg and WNYC's John Schaefer (host of "New Sounds").
The band will be playing a few North American shows right after the album's release, including one in NYC at Mercury Lounge on February 6. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (10/23) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (10/21) at noon. All dates are listed below...
by Andrew Sacher
Seattle's annual Capitol Hill Block Party returns in 2015 from July 24-26. This year's lineup includes Ratatat, TV on the Radio, The Kills, Father John Misty, Jamie xx, Toro y Moi, Built to Spill, Wye Oak, The Julie Ruin, Shabazz Palaces, Flatbush Zombies, Deafheaven, BADBADNOTGOOD, Lower Dens, Girlpool, Protomartyr and more. Tickets are on sale now. Full lineup below.
SSDD (photo by Invisible Hour)
As always, the lineup includes a few cool local Seattle bands, and it's a good way to check out some of those bands if you're coming to the fest from out of town. One is SSDD (aka "Steal Shit Do Drugs"). They include former members of The Intelligence, The Dutchess & the Duke and more, and they just put out a new EP First Comes Money on Help Yourself Records this week. They make garage punk that's pretty catchy and clear-sounding as far as garage punk goes, but still driving and full of attitude. Stream their new EP below.
Another cool Seattle punk band that
isn't is playing Capitol Hill Block Party, and have a hometown show with Happy Diving and Never Young a few days beforehand, is So Pitted. Their latest release is this year's 1 EP, which is a little murkier and freakier than SSDD. They've had their praises sung by other Seattle bands, like Chastity Belt. They also recently played a Sub Pop-curated show with White Lung, and ended up on one of the Sub Pop staffers' year-end lists in 2014. You can stream their newest EP below and download it (name your price) here.
by Bill Pearis
Sylvan Esso and Flock of Dimes (aka Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak) helped each other out for respective AV Club Undercover sessions, with Sylvan Esso doing Gillian Welch's "Everything is Free" and Flock of Dimes tackling Crowded House's "Don't Dream It's Over." They're both really good, and you can watch them below. Both session songs are being released as a split 7" that will be out via Partisan Records on November 7 so keep an eye out for that.
Sylvan Esso are doing the festival circuit, this weekend visiting Dover, DE for Firefly. Wasner has a couple Flock of Dimes dates as well, in September. All dates for both are listed below.
Grimes @ Pitchfork Fest 7/20/14
Photographer Dominick Mastrangelo has been contributing to BrooklynVegan for years, and this year he did most of his shooting in Chicago (as well as other places, like Finland's Flow Festival). Now that the year is coming to a close, Dominick has put together his favorite 14 photos that he took this year, as well as a list of ten records he's kept on heavy rotation throughout 2014. Check out more of his shots, and browse his album list, below...
Protomartyr's second album, Under Color of Official Right, is one of the year's most acclaimed albums, matching witty if bleak observations to snarling postpunk backing. The band spent most of the year on the road, out on tours with Spray Paint, Whatever Brains and Parquet Courts, making space for both SXSW, CMJ and one of DbA's final shows, too. Which leads to Protomartyr's Top 10 of 2014 list they sent us, which could have only been sent by them. Here's the setup:
As is often the case with touring, all you have is time and it must be killed. Going to see a movie, any movie, is our default band activity. We go to the theater and whatever is showing next is what we see. We'd like to think this is the reason why we saw so much shit, but honestly, seeing something awful became an addiction. Other than that, the only criteria was that the theater had to sell booze. That became an addiction as well.You won't find Boyhood or Birdman or Grand Budapest Hotel on this list, but it's a funny read and works as a travelogue as well. Protomartyr's "Ten Movies We Saw This Year" are listed with commentary below.
In other news, Protomartyr are part of a Joyful Noise Recordings' new subscription record club, the 2015 Flexidisc Series where "some of our favorite artists to release never-before-heard recordings on a fleeting analog format." Other artists contributing to the series include Cloud Nothings, Wye Oak, Deerhoof & Celestial Shore, Sonny & the Sunsets, and King Buzzo.
If you you're going to be in Detroit around Christmas, Protomartyr are playing on December 26 at Jumbos, a place they wrote a song about on their first album. Flyer for that is below as well...
by Andrew Sacher
Foxing at Webster Studio in August (more by Amanda Hatfield)
The totally stacked Modern Baseball / Knuckle Puck / Foxing / Crying / Somos tour lands in NYC for its first of two shows tonight (12/12). Tonight's show is at Gramercy Theater and then they play Music Hall of Williamsburg on Monday (12/15). You can still get tickets to Monday's show but tonight is sold out. Updated dates are listed below.
If you haven't seen Foxing live, they're the kind of band you really have to see for yourself to get the full experience. But to at least get an idea of what to expect, you can check out the band's new live video for "Rory" that they filmed at The Fest this year. Watch it below.
Four Foxing members also gave us lists of their favorite albums of 2014. One of the lists includes Cymbals Eat Guitars who also included Foxing on their own list and also play NYC tonight. Check those out lists and the Fest video below...
Topshelf Records has had a pretty great year, putting out records by several rising young bands across various rock subgenres (not just emo!), as well as long-awaited returns from veteran bands. Some of those artists, like You Blew It!, are already ending up on 2014 year-end lists, and we asked a few bands on the label to tell us their favorite albums of the year. Below, you'll find year-end lists from You Blew It!, The Jazz June, Cut Teeth, Nai Harvest, and label co-founder Kevin Duquette.
You Blew It! recently announced an upcoming EP on Jade Tree and a tour with Rozwell Kid (who are on their list), Tiny Moving Parts (who are an honorable mention) and Sorority Noise. As discussed, that tour hits NYC on 2/20 at The Studio at Webster Hall. Tickets for that show go on sale at 10 AM on Friday (12/5).
The Jazz June are going on a tour with labelmates Field Mouse (who are on their list) soon, which hits NYC on 12/27 at Saint Vitus (tickets). They put out their first album since 2002 this year, and also headlined the BV CMJ showcase which also featured Beach Slang, who are on their list.
In other Topshelf news, they've got a Caravels / Octaves split, a new Suis La Lune album, and new music from Kind of Like Spitting on the way. And as discussed, Bob Nanna is releasing the first City On Film album since 2005 on the label this month. He already released the first Braid album since 1998 on the label earlier in the year.
Browse the Topshelf lists below...
Nicholas Jaar w/ Joshua Light Show visuals, Fierce Festival 2013 (via)
We mentioned that Woods would be playing NYU Skirball Center on October 24 with phantasmagoric visuals by Joshua Light Show. We now know that that performance is part of the 2014 Joshua Light Show Festival which happens October 23 - 25 at NYU Skirball Center. This year's lineup includes Glasser, Wye Oak, Television, J. Spaceman & Kid Millions, as well as The Bad Plus performing Ornette Coleman's Science Fiction. Specific showdates, times and ticket info is still TBA.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
"Wye Oak's excellent new songs fit perfectly with the older favs.
Fantastic show." - Mike Katzif
"Beautiful set from @braidsmusic tonight at Webster Hall!" - Marilis C
Wye Oak / Braids @ Webster Hall - 5/7/14
Wye Oak and Braids brought their tour to NYC last night (5/7) for a show at Webster Hall. Braids opened, and played what sounded like a lot of new stuff. Then came Wye Oak, who split their set pretty evenly between this year's guitar-less Shriek and its predecessor Civilian, plus included a cover of Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill" in the encore, which has been a regular occurrence on this tour. Pictures of both bands from the Webster Hall show are in this post.
Earlier this year, former Byrd Gene Clark's 1974 solo album, No Other, was paid tribute to on a tour with an indie supergroup that featured members of Beach House, Fleet Foxes, Grizzly Bear, The Walkmen, Wye Oak, Fairport Convention and others. The tour hit NYC for two sold-out Music Hall of Williamsburg in January -- here's what we said about one of them:
Gene Clark's 1974 solo album, No Other, was dismissed by critics at the time as being bloated and overproduced but in recent years has become a lost classic. So taken with it were Andy and Victoria of Beach House, they spearheaded a tour to recreate the album live with a host of their Baltimore musician friends (plus some notable non-Baltimore friends to sing lead), and a chorus of singers.Pitchfork filmed one of the Music Hall of Williamsburg shows, and has now posted a video of the full show, which you can watch below.
I'm not sure how many people were there because they loved No Other and how many people thought, like, Beach House might play a few of their songs, but certainly by midpoint in the show the crowd was fully on-board. After an excerpt of Gene Clark documentary The Byrd Who Flew Alone, Bella Union's Mark Byrne came out to introduce the evening and how things would be working. The album was played in order, with Fleet Foxes' Robin Pecknold opening the night with lead vocals on "Life's Greatest Fool." When the harmonies kicked in about a minute into the song -- courtesy Jenn Wasner (Wye Oak), Victoria Legrand (Beach House), Tony Drummond (Celebration) and Cricket Arrison -- Clark's orchestral vision blossomed to life. Robin would also sing "Strength of Strings" a few songs later.
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
astronaut / Kate Nash / Replacements / Haim / Girl Talk
At 68, Bryan Ferry is one of the oldest performers at this weekend's Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival, and one of the most debonair. But the former Roxy Music singer and veteran solo artist was one of at least two artists who wore a tuxedo for their performance at the annual festival in Indio Friday night.We already posted Outkast and Dum Dum Girls. Here are the rest of the pictures from the first dusty day of the first weekend of Coachella 2014 (which is also streaming online). The photos continue, Replacements and Bryan Ferry included, below...
The other, a bit surprisingly considering his raucous musical legacy, was Paul Westerberg, 54, the perpetually tousled leader of The Replacments, who reunited last year after a 22-year hiatus to perform three shows (Coachella was the fourth). Yet, while Westerberg was quick to doff his tuxedo jacket, Ferry kept his on, although he undid his tie. Their sartorial style notwithstanding, Ferry and Westerberg have little in common, but both delivered winning performances that represented two very different -- and influential -- chapters in rock history. [UTSanDiego]
Pains / Hold Steady
After Friday, which came after Thursday, which came after a night show on Wednesday, we said hello and goodbye to both of Red 7's stages one last time with our third and final BrooklynVegan SXSW day party at the 7th & Red River venue in Austin on Saturday (3/15).
Outside, despite the rain that plagued us that day, Palehound kicked things off with their noisy indie rock, and they were followed by the high-energy poppy punk of Cincinnati's Tweens. More poppy punk came from Northampton's Potty Mouth, and then came Mary Timony's (Autoclave, Helium, Wild Flag) riff-rockin' new band Ex Hex, who were one of the most fun bands of the day to watch. They were followed by Potty Mouth's Northampton neighbors Speedy Ortiz, who were great as always, and whose new stuff (like "American Horror") sounded great next to their older songs (like "Taylor Swift"). Wye Oak followed and previewed stuff from their upcoming guitar-less album (they did have their guitar on Saturday though), and the show closed with a super fun set from The Hold Steady.
The indoor stage got off to a great start with Saintseneca, who had a tight blend of Fleet Foxes/Arcade Fire-isms, then it got weird for the UK's Fat White Family, who brought filth and fury not unlike The Stooges or The Birthday Party. (They're in NYC this weekend.) Quilt kept things trippy (but cleaner) after that, and Connan Mockasin was his eccentric self too (though he admitted he was recovering from the night before where he told everyone at Swan Dive to take their clothes off). Then came the art pop of Hundred Waters, a mostly-solo set from Braid frontman Bob Nanna which included Braid songs and some Jack and Ace action with his wife Lauren LoPiccolo, sneering Detroit post-punks Protomartyr, and finally a headlining set from the new lineup of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, which is easily their most powerful and fun to watch yet.
Tweens / Ex Hex
Shiner beer was on special and we gave away free Jameson. Veri organic soda was free, plentiful and was there to help you rehydrate. We let in 20 people each day who were taking advantage of Esurance's SXSW-wide #EsuranceAccess program.
Indiegogo was there too, though due to the rain, like Marshall, they moved inside on Saturday.
Special thanks to all of our bands and partners and sponsors for making this party possible.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Ex Hex @ Red 7, 3/15/14
As mentioned, Merge Records is celebrating its 25th Anniversary this year, including the four-day Merge 25 festival which happens July 23 - 26 in Carrboro, NC. Merge has released the initial line-up, which includes Wye Oak, The Clientele, Destroyer, Caribou, Lambchop (performing Nixon), Neutral Milk Hotel, The Rock*A*Teens, Ex Hex, and Bob Mould. While day schedules haven't been announced events will happen at the following venues:
July 23 Baldwin Auditorium, Duke University Campus, Durham, NCFull Festival Passes are $195 and will go on sale to the general public on Friday (3/21) at 11 am EST via the Cat's Cradle website. Individual tickets for the events in Carrboro will go on sale Wednesday, March 26 and the Duke University show goes on sale Tuesday, April 22.
July 24 Cat's Cradle, Carrboro, NC
July 25 Cat's Cradle, Carrboro, NC
July 26 Full Day Music Concert, outdoors, Carrboro, NC
Both Wye Oak and Ex Hex played our Saturday SXSW free day party this past weekend in Austin. Ex Hex (featuring Mary Timony of Helium and Wild Flag) put on a killer set of glammy powerpop. Pics from their performance are in this post and you can check out Wye Oak pics here. Ex Hex also have a new video for "Hot and Cold" that costars Ian Svenonius (Chain & the Gang, Make-Up, etc). You can watch that below.
More BV SXSW day party pics of Ex Hex, plus the new Ex Hex video, below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
Wye Oak @ BVSXSW 3/15/2014
Wye Oak have released a second song from their soon-to-be-released album, Shriek. "Glory" shows off the duo's new danceable direction, but still retains that grandeur they're known for. You can stream it below and look for the album on April 29 via Merge.
Jenn and Andy were in Austin, TX for SXSW which just wrapped up. The last of their shows was at the BrooklynVegan Saturday day party where they played along side Merge labelmates Ex Hex, The Hold Steady, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and more. Jenn Wasner definitely took a guitarist's approach to bass which is the at the root of Wye Oak's new direction. She played keyboards (and a little guitar) too. Pictures from their day party set are in this post.
Wye Oak will launch their North American tour next month which includes an NYC stop on May 7 at Webster Hall (tickets). More pics from their BV day party set below...
Wye Oak's new album, Shriek, is out next month and finds the Baltimore duo switching things up, with singer Jenn Wasner switching from guitar to bass, giving things a fresh feel. The band's tour starts in April but they'll be in Austin this week for SXSW where they'll play a number of shows (schedule below), the last of which is the Saturday BrooklynVegan free day party with The Hold Steady, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Speedy Ortiz and more. Wasner was kind enough to answer our 5 QUESTIONS:
1) What would your metal band name be?
JW: Decapitated Fuck.
2) Be honest: how often do you change your clothes on tour?
UPDATE: Thursday lineup announced too
After a Wednesday night official showcase at the same venue, BrooklynVegan will take over both stages of Red 7 during the hours of noon-6pm each day on Thursday (3/13), Friday (3/14) and Saturday (3/15) of SXSW Music. All three day party lineups will be announced momentarily (update: Thursday is announced), but here is Saturday!
SATURDAY, MARCH 15, 2014 @ RED 7 (FREE)Please RSVP, and show up early to see all the bands and to ensure you get some complimentary drinks courtesy of Jameson (while supplies last).
12:45 Fat White Family
02:15 Connan Mockasin
03:00 Hundred Waters
03:45 Bob Nanna of Braid
05:05 The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
01:30 Potty Mouth
02:15 Ex Hex (Mary Timony's new band)
03:05 Speedy Ortiz
04:00 Wye Oak
05:00 The Hold Steady
We'll also have Shiner beer specials all day long, free Veri organic soda, and free popcorn at the Marshall Headphones booth where you can pose in our photobooth and where someone will win a pair of headphones every hour on the hour!
Again, this is one of three free BrooklynVegan day parties at Red 7 this year. Please RSVP once for entry to all three. SXSW badges are also welcome and be sure to stop by the Esurance Glove Box at the Austin Convention Center or their Fuel Lounge at 6th and Trinity to pick up an Esurance Access Pass. Then follow @esurance on Twitter to find out when and where you can hop the line for our party and others around Austin....
Braids at POP Montreal 2013 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
Montreal's Braids returned last year with a new sound on Flourish // Perish, which came out via Arbutus (Grimes, Doldrums, etc), and they'll be taking that sound back to our side of the border this spring. Since we last spoke, it's been announced that they'll be the support act on the Wye Oak tour, including the NYC stop, happening on May 7 at Webster Hall. Tickets for that show are still available.
All dates are listed, along with a trailer video for the tour, below...
by Bill Pearis
When Wye Oak said they were shaking things up for their new record, they meant it. Jenn Wasner has moved to bass with "nary a lick of guitar" and the band have taken on a new, elasticized sound for for the new record, which they've since revealed is titled Shriek and will be out April 29 on Merge. That's the cover art above. You can check out the first track from it, "The Tower," in this post. It is most definitely different for Wye Oak, but that is not a bad thing at all.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Iain Matthews / Jenn Wasner @ MHOW 1/26/2014
Mr. Scally, 31, first heard "No Other" in 2004, when he began collaborating with Ms. Legrand; her father gave her the L.P. "I thought it was one of those classic rock records like 'After the Gold Rush,' one of those well-known canonized great records," Mr. Scally said. "But I found out over the years that it's just a record no one knew."The short Gene Clark 'No Other' tour came to close on Sunday night (1/26) in NYC with the second of two sold-out shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg. We've got a review of Saturday night's show, as well as two sets of pics from that show, and here's a set from Sunday, featuring Fairport Convention's Iain Matthews (looking much younger than his 67 years), Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner and the whole show.
Beach House has been listening to it "constantly" since then, discovering its "onionlike quality," Mr. Scally said, adding: "The first thing you hear is the production, the general feel. Ten listens in, you start fixating on the lyrics. And some of the lyrics on the record just destroy you, they're so strange and wonderful." - [New York Times]
photos by P Squared Photography
Victoria Legrand / Hamilton Leithauser @ MHOW, 1/25/2014
After The Walkmen's Hamilton Leithauser crooned the country-rocker "From a Silver Phial" and the album-closing "Lady of the North," the whole ensemble returned for an encore that kicked off with a vibrant rendition of The Byrds' jangly "I'll Feel a Whole Lot Better." The crowd cheered heartily when Legrand stepped out from the chorus line to deliver a truly arresting lead-vocal performance on "Hear the Wind," a gorgeous country-folk ballad from Clark's Two Sides to Every Story. Finally, The Byrds' classic "Eight Miles High" opened with haunting a cappella harmonies before Scally intoned the song's familiar bassline, Strohmeier's twelve-string guitar riffs and Mike Lowry's percussion steadily intensifying into an epic crescendo. As the musicians traded verses and frolicked about the stage, their camaraderie and enthusiasm were infectious, festively capping a stirring celebration of Clark's music. - [DCist]The above review was from Friday night's DC stop on the Gene Clark 'No Other' tour, which featured a live recreation of the former Byrds' 1974 album featuring Hamilton Leithauser of The Walkmen, Victoria Legrand of Beach House, members of Wye Oak, Lower Dens and more. The next night (1/25), the tour hit NYC for it's first of two shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg. A review and a first set of pictures are here and another set of pics are in this post.
Pics from Sunday's show (1/26) are here. More of Saturday's MHOW shows (Pt 2) below...
photos by Gretchen Robinette; words by Bill Pearis
Robin Pecknold / Daniel Rossen @ MHOW 1/25/2014
Gene Clark's 1974 solo album, No Other, was dismissed by critics at the time as being bloated and overproduced but in recent years has become a lost classic. So taken with it were Andy and Victoria of Beach House, they spearheaded a tour to recreate the album live with a host of their Baltimore musician friends (plus some notable non-Baltimore friends to sing lead), and a chorus of singers. The short tour they put together hit Brooklyn's Music Hall of Williamsburg over the weekend for sold-out shows on Saturday (1/25) and Sunday (1/26). We're got three sets of pictures from these shows -- two from Saturday and one from Sunday -- the first of which is in this post.
I was at the Saturday show. I'm not sure how many people were there because they loved No Other and how many people thought, like, Beach House might play a few of their songs, but certainly by midpoint in the show the crowd was fully on-board. After an excerpt of Gene Clark documentary The Byrd Who Flew Alone, Bella Union's Mark Byrne came out to introduce the evening and how things would be working. The album was played in order, with Fleet Foxes' Robin Pecknold opening the night with lead vocals on "Life's Greatest Fool." When the harmonies kicked in about a minute into the song -- courtesy Jenn Wasner (Wye Oak), Victoria Legrand (Beach House), Tony Drummond (Celebration) and Cricket Arrison -- Clark's orchestral vision blossomed to life. Robin would also sing "Strength of Strings" a few songs later.
Next up was onetime Fairport Convention singer/guitarist Iain Matthews who has long championed Clark and was the only one to play guitar while singing (he also played as part of the band). Matthews was also the only one to really talk about Clark, mentioning that sales of No Other have gone up 4000% since the announcement of this tour. He sang "Silver Raven" and would come out later for "True Love."
Daniel Rossen of Grizzly Bear probably was the best vocal match to Clark, both having a similar husky, dusky quality. His lead on No Other's grandiose, rocking title track was maybe the highlight of the evening, and returned to sing "Some Misunderstanding."
The Walkmen's Hamilton Leithauser made his first appearance on "Form a Silver Phial" and though one associates him a cigarette hoarse style of singing, the softer side of his vocals were on display here, though he looked no less intense doing so. He also closed out No Other with the lovely "Lady of the North." The band -- which included members of Celebration, Beach House, Lower Dens, Cass McCombs' band, Mt. Royal and others -- did a fantastic job, definitely no half-assed "let's try this" kind of thing.
Once the album proper was played and a brief intermission, the band returned for three songs. The Byrds' "Feel a Whole Lot Better" saw Pecknold, Rossen and Leithauser trading verses; Victoria Legrand had a moment in the spotlight taking lead on "Hear the Wind" from Clark's 1977 solo LP, Two Sides to Every Story, and the evening finished with a psyched-out version of "Eight Miles High." This was a knockout show.
Wye Oak at MHOW, 9/20/2012 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Wye Oak's last album, 2011's Civilian, took the band to new levels of success and when it came time to make the follow-up, Jen Wasner and Andy Stack could have easily made Civilian Pt 2 and rode the indie folk train to new heights of popularity. Instead, the duo are shaking things up considerably for their as-yet-untitled fourth album which they made at Brooklyn's Rare Book Room studios. Wasner told SPIN:
There's not a lick of guitar on this whole record. It basically inverts what we were responsible for. Andy was playing droney bass lines on keyboard. Now he's responsible for the more upper register stuff that guitar would normally handle, while I'm playing bass lines on a bass guitar. The idea was really appealing to me because we had sort of hit a wall, just with the complete and total excess of touring that we had done, the use and overuse of that format. It tainted the guitar for me and I was finding it really, really hard to get anything out of it from a writing perspective. I wasn't excited about it -- too much baggage. It just felt tired to me.While no release date or other info has been released yet, Wye Oak do have tour dates coming up on their way to SXSW (they're playing Savannah Stopover too). They'll also be at Coachella this year, and on the other side of that they'll play NYC at Webster Hall on May 7. Tickets for Webster go on sale Friday (1/24) at noon.
Jen Wasner is currently on the road this week as part of the touring tribute to Gene Clark's No Other that also features members of Beach House, Grizzly Bear, Fleet Foxes, Lower Dens, The Walkmen and more. That will be in NYC this weekend for sold out shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday (1/25) and Sunday (1/26).
All Wye Oak tour dates are listed below.