Cate Le Bon and White Fence's Tim Presley brought their tour to NYC on Thursday night (1/26) for a show at Bowery Ballroom. The two made a record together as Drinks, and Cate once toured in White Fence, so as you might expect there was some cross pollination but maybe not as much as you might expect. Presley's "The Wink Band" was actually Le Bon and her band, faces painted mime-white, as they ably played songs from his skronky, twitchy new solo album (which Cate produced).

For the most part, Presley did not return the favor during Cate's set, not coming out till the end. It's fine, Cate's band -- including multi-instrumentalist Sweet Baboo and excellent drummer Daniel Ward -- are in the zone at this point, and her set was, as usual, great. There was a lot of a lot of Crab Day, a couple songs off her new Rock Pool EP ("Aside from Growing Old" was especially lovely), and a few songs from her other EPs. Tim came out for an extended take on Crab Day's dada-ist, krauty "What's Not Mine" to finish the main set. Tim and Cate then came out to perform a song together and then the rest of the band returned for favorite "Are You With Me Now?"

Pictures from the whole show are in the gallery above. Cate's new EP, Rock Pool, is out today via Drag City. She also just penned an editorial for The Guardian about the new guitar that St. Vincent designed with women in mind:

Clark, easily one of the most technically brilliant and inventive guitarists, has taken the unaccommodating shape of the traditional guitar into her own hands and designed one that allows room “for a breast or two”. The ace in the hole is that the design is hugely desirable for everyone. It considers the guitar as a utilitarian construct without compromising its aesthetic form. It does not exclude men by considering the female body first. There is unification in its design, harmony within all the components that surround the attitude of the guitar, which to me is obliviously powerful, much like the creator herself.

Throughout history, design has informed us of people’s attitudes towards things rather than the thing itself. It can embody the values and concerns that have the most powerful emotional significance of a period. St Vincent’s guitar does not come with combative rhetoric. It is not an angry knock on the door. It is suddenly present, equally audacious, nonchalant and strong. It is not a call for change but a change in itself spurred by one of the greatest guitarists of our time, who just so happens to be female, finding the generic guitar inferior to her needs as a musician. Hopefully this guitar will resonate as an iconic piece of design that characterises an era of gender equality that exists without second thought.

That is how I feel about it, anyhow. I can also tell you that both Tim Presley and I find it an absolute joy to play.

Cate was not playing a St. Vincent guitar last night, however.


photos by Ester Segretto