Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Everest at Spaceland... and More

Monday night (June 16) I took a bunch of friends to see Everest at Spaceland as part of the Afternoons residency and it was a night none of us will soon forget. We first went to Echo Park for dinner and arrived up at Spaceland with too much time to spare. So we walked down to the art installation that is always on that lot near the sidewalk restaurant on Silver Lake Blvd. I've enjoyed previous exhibits there including the tee pee and the parachutes but now they have this large hollow cube with odd shaped chambers, nooks and crannies inside. It's called the "Phalanstery Module" by an artist named Jimenez Lai, and it's really remarkable. Well, we all clammored inside, situating ourselves, only to realize that the thing was rotating, so the wall slowly became the floor which became a wall again. The constant shifting of your center of gravity does strange things to your brain and before long we were helpless, rolling, laughing masses of jelly. So, in this state of mind we entered Spaceland and saw Everest play an extraordinary set beginning with "Rebels in the Roses" and including "Reloader", among others, a great cover of Dylan's "Down in the Easy Chair" and ending with "I Can See It In Your Eyes" in an alternate version that really rocked and even included a quote from the Television song "Marquee Moon". Everyone I brought became an instant fan and my good friend Stephen took the photo above. Great to see Russell and the guys safely back from their first cross country tour. Next, they're off to Europe on Monday! I stayed for a few song by Afternoons which sounded really good, but since I'll be back there on the 30th, I'll see them when they play with The Happy Hollows.

The night before, Sunday, June 15, I was at the Troubadour to see Russian Circles. I don't know how to classify them because if I say they play very heavy instrumental rock, it may sound like I'm into hair metal bands (which I'm not). They can play very aggressivly, but they modulate with numerous quiet passages, and have a sure sense of melody that reminds me, slightly, of Pinback at their most boisterous. Any band that wanders into Pinback territory is going to immediately interest me. Interesting crowd of longhairs and , perhaps, metal fans, but, contrary to expectations, extremely well behaved and wonderfully intent on the music (no text messaging, I could see). I've seen this band a few times now and would happily go back for more. Their CD "Enter" is worth checking out if it sounds interesting to you.


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