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Summer Tones @ The Espy 28-02-09

March 3, 2009

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This was a really fun night, one of those events with bands I am looking forward to finally seeing, bands I’m interested in checking out and some bands I’ve never heard before but turned out to be good. Surprisingly it was all pretty much hit and hardly any miss as each set I watched was at the very least, quite entertaining. Walked into the front bar to catch most of Ned Collette Band, who were enjoyable. Sort of a straight ahead mid tempo rock sound but with hints of country and some nice jamming thrown in. He also has a interesting voice which really added to things.

Wandered into the Gershwin Room (which is nice compared to the rest of The Epsy) to watch a little bit of Mountains in the Sky, who seemed to be having fun turning their electronic sound into a fantastic three piece live band. I would have watched the whole thing but wanted to check out Kes Band back over in the front bar. They played a good set with some fantastic guitar work, minimal vocals and some well written songs with a quietly confident stage presence. Watched a tiny bit of Rowland S. Howard, who I thought was kind of boring so instead got a good spot for High Places.

A boy and girl creating some interesting sounds together with the help of electronic power. They really had some fantastic textures going and the vocals over the top were nice, I liked them a lot better live than on record and they seemed to be having fun. French Rockets, were next and I watched the start of their set while they playing some epic sounding introductory piece with a really cool light show but then progressed into a sort of boring rock song so I instead caught most of Lawrence Arabia’s set. They (him?) were fun, playing an energetic set of fun indie pop songs. I didn’t know any of their material but they were really enjoyable and the dude from The Ruby Suns joined them onstage for a bit which was cool as they returned the favour in his set next up also.

The Ruby Suns are really fun. I love the sounds and energy they have for just two guys. Tribal beats, African influence but all with a fantastic pop sensibility. They also closed the set with an awesome new song (with lyric sheets in hand) and I’m pretty excited they are supporting Of Montreal on Thursday. Dan Deacon came out next and totally ruled! Some people got snarky cause he kept telling the crowd what to do but his plans only added to the show. Playing his hyperactive electro from within the crowd while forming a circle for a dance contest and then starting a gauntlet that weaved all around the venue that everyone had to run through (including him). The music was also pretty good, particularly the super awesome closer “Wham City”.

I caught the end of Pivot’s set and I’ve only read good things about them but had never actually heard them. Turns out they are pretty rad, some great rhythmic rock sounds with great drumming and a unique prog influenced feel. Lastly I watched the start of Witch Hat’s show but to be honest I found them boring. I dig them on record but now both times I have seen them live they have failed to impress me, maybe I was just way too tired to appreciate them by then though. Didn’t really matter as the rest of the night was fantastic. (Also sorry I keep having no photos with my posts but my camera died as did my phone which had a decent camera)

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