The Fresh & Onlys and Thee Oh Sees are touring & in NYC — The Girls at Dawn play Mercury Lounge + other show dates
by Bill Pearis
Thee Oh Sees @ 2009 Siren Fest (more by Chris La Putt)
Why oh why are there so many shows I want to see all happening on the same night? Tonight is jam-packed. Top of my list is the return of San Francisco's Thee Oh Sees and The Fresh & Onlys who play tonight (10/8) at Mercury Lounge and tomorrow (10/9) at the Bell House. Thee Oh Sees also play Maxwell's on Saturday (10/10) without the F&Os (but with Pierced Arrows).
Both last played NYC together at the Woodsist / Captured Tracks Festival on July 4. They also both just released their second of two albums this year, and weirdly enough, The Fresh & Onlys' Grey Eyed Girls is on Woodsist, and Thee Oh Sees' Dog Poison is on Captured Tracks. (More crossover trivia: Captured Tracks' honcho Mike Sniper did the art for Grey Eyed Girls.) I like both albums a lot. Grey Eyed Girls is darker than the F&O's self-titled album from the spring, at times (like on "Invisible Forces" which is downloadable above) a bit like early Echo & the Bunnymen. Elsewhere it's pretty and sweet ("Dude's Got a Tender Heart," also downloadable). The new Oh Sees album is rather different for John Dwyer and company, trading sonic assault for acoustic guitars and the occasional flute. It's still perfect beach music, but this is more sundown than shooting the curl. In addition to new albums, both have released something like 23 new 7"s between them since the summer, so look out for all that stuff at the merch table.
Both bands really bring it live. John Dwyer beats the crap out of his guitars, while shoving his microphone all the mouth for maximum distortion. His eyes bug out a little. The dude gives 110%. If that were possible. And The Fresh & Onlys are great too, though I hear singer Tim Cohen's wrist is still in a cast (bassist Shayde Sartin shoved him down some stairs during some spirited horseplay) so he'll be on keyboard duty, but they managed to whip up a storm back in July -- none of the band seem to be able to stand still.
The Girls at Dawn
Opening bands are worth seeing too. At Mercury Lounge, it's Toronto's Still Life Still, who also opened for Kurt Vile at the same venue last night, as well as locals The Girls at Dawn. The latter are an all-girl trio who draw influence from both Phil Spector and C-86, and if that sounds like something you're heard before (Brilliant Colors, Liechtenstein, a certain other bunch of Brooklynites), I'll say Girls at Dawn do it pretty well and manage to carve out their own little corner of a crowded market. I like what's on their MySpace and tonight's show is a record release party for their debut 7" on HoZac, and they'll soon have records out on Tic Tac Totally and Captured Tracks, so expect to hear their name (and their music) more often in the coming months.
At the Bell House, Fresh & Onlys are on first, and then it's the wild world of Golden Triangle whose debut album is due out early next year on Hardly Art (whose CMJ showcase they're also playing). Their live performances are usually pretty fun, ranging from the somewhat chaotic to completely out of control, but I'd say it'll be the former given your average Bell House crowd. But then again, this may not be your average Bell House crowd.
All dates and flyers below...
Thee Oh Sees - 2009 Tour Dates
Oct 8 mercury lounge w/fresh and onlys manhatten, New York
Oct 9 The Bell House w/Golden Triangle and The Fresh and Onlys brooklyn, New York
Oct 10 Maxwells w/Pierced Arrows hoboken, New Jersey
Oct 11 Danger Danger Gallery w/Golden Triangle philidelphia, Pennsylvania
Oct 12 Black Cat washington dc, Washington DC
Oct 13 Grey Eagle Tavern ashville, North Carolina
Oct 14 e.a.r.l. atlanta, Georgia
Oct 15 Alabama Music Box mobile, Alabama
Oct 16 Saturn new orleans, Louisiana
Oct 17 10/17/09 Mangos houston, Texas
Oct 18 beerland austin, Texas
Oct 19 Bash Riprocks lubbuck, mutha fucka!, Texas
Oct 21 10/21/09 Bar Pink Elephant w/The Fresh and Onlys and Dan Melchoir san diego, California
Oct 22 Echo w/The Fresh and Onlys and Dan Melchoir los angeles, California
Oct 25 bottom of the hill BUDGET ROCK FESTw/gris gris ,dan melchoir frsh and onlys san fran back home!, California
The Fresh & Onlys - 2009 Tour Dates
Oct 8 Mercury Lounge w/ Thee Oh Sees/The Girls at Dawn Manhattan, New York
Oct 9 The Bell House w/ Thee Oh Sees/Golden Triangle Brooklyn, New York
Oct 10 31st St. Pub w/ The Box Elders Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Oct 11 The Hideout w/ The Box Elders Chicago, Illinois
Oct 12 Brothers w/ The Box Elders Omaha, Nebraska
Oct 13 Bender's w/ The Box Elders Denver, Colorado
Oct 14 House Show w/ Box Elders Provo, Utah
Oct 17 Someday Lounge Portland, Oregon
Oct 18 Funhouse w/ Dan Melchior und das Menace Seattle, Washington
Oct 20 Stork Club w/ Dan Melchior und das Menace Oakland, California
Oct 21 Bar Pink Elephant w/ Dan Melchior und das Menace/Thee Oh Sees San Diego, California
Oct 22 The Echo w/ Thee Oh Sees and Dan Melchior un Das Menace Los Angeles, California
Oct 24 The Partisan w/ Dan Melchior und das menace Merced, California
Oct 24 The Crepe Place w/ Dan Melchior und das menace Santa Cruz, California
Oct 25 Bottom of the Hill-Budget Rock! w/ Dan Melchior/Gris Gris/Thee Oh Sees San Francisco, California
Nov 16 Elbo Room w/ Lovvers San Francisco, California
Girls at Dawn - 2009 Tour Dates
Oct 8 Mercury Lounge *TGAD RECORD RELEASE SHOW* w/ The Fresh & Onlys, Thee Oh Sees Manhattan, New York
Oct 22 Don Pedros w/ Smith Westerns, The Beets, Xray Eyeballz, Idle Times, Beach Fossils, & more Brooklyn
Oct 26 Bruar Falls Brooklyn
Nov 14 Maxwells w/ Shonen Knife Hoboken, New Jersey
Nov 15 Bruar Falls w/ Gentleman Jesse & His Men, De Cylinders Brooklyn, New York