Thursday, May 7, 2009

Pehrspace X 2 - "A Bunch of Shows, Part III"

Apparently, neither my ears nor my will were destroyed by My Bloody Valentine, because the very next night, I was back out, at Pehrspace on Friday, April 17, 2009. I wanted to catch up with The Karabal Nightlife, who I haven't seen play in a while, and see another Isgoodband, Nightfur, whose myspace samples were intriguing.

This was also the first night of Coachella, so there were only a few brave souls left in L.A. to venture out to the clubs. All of us misfits fit into Pehrspace and it turned out to be a most congenial crowd. In fact, no one wanted to leave at the conclusion.

Kissing Cousins were on when I came in and they turned out to be another great band I'd never heard of. The guiding force behind the band is Heather B. Hayward, who's remarkable life story is related on the band's myspace page, and who was anxious to form an all girl band of "femusicians". They played a strong set of driving garage indie rock featuring a nice array of instrumentalization which could be both eerie and seductive. A quirky, off-center approach to melody was also refreshing. I look forward to more from this attention grabbing band.

I couldn't help but fall for Nightfur's blend of guitar folk and '60's acid rock. Arresting songs and interesting cryptic lyrics highlighted by some terrific vocals grabbed me from the start. Nightfur is an Isgoodband I had heard about but not seen, and this set really impressed me.

They sang in front of a backdrop of black and white drawings of dismembered kitty parts, painted on Pehrspace's white walls, that was both disturbing and intriguing. One hoped the artist was not drawing from experience.

I've gotten to know Jesse much better than I know his band, The Karabal Nightlife (above), and enjoyed hearing about his musical heritage. The band plays a rangy take on garage rock with a bit of surf-punk thrown in. Basic , classic song structure lies at the heart of The Karabal Nightlife's songs, played well by the assembled band and highlighted by Jesse's uninhibited vocals.

The next night, Saturday, April 18, 2009, Elaine Layabout's "Hella Hipster Hoedown" was a smashing success. The crowd quickly swelled to capacity. Mississippi Man played real solid alt-country indie rock, very good singers, but I got there too late to see more than a few songs. What I was able to hear impressed me and together, with the bales of hay and a countrified Ms. Layabout, the atmosphere was definitely farm-friendly

I'm getting used to the tidal flow of Pehrspace. During the sets the crowd crunches inside, the temperature rapidly rises, the humidity increases, and everyone swoons to the music together, for there is no room to do otherwise. I'm surprised thunderstorms don't break out inside. The set ends and the crowd flows out through the door for oxygen in the parking lot. Actually the room airs out nicely and prepares for the next high tide.

Cobra Lilies came on next and, in spite of all I've heard I was not prepared for them. They brought the 'PARTY' to the party. Whoever is the brains behind this band has got to be congratulated. They pull in elements from hundreds of sources and make it all seem so easy. The Monolators' Eli Chartkoff sings and plays banjo, while Mary Chartfoff plays saxophone, among other things. Ema of Ema and the Ghosts handles primary lead female vocals, though everyone seemed to take a turn.

The music is like vaudeville crossed with an indie rock version of Hee Haw , except it was genuinely funny. I especially enjoyed the 'Indie Rockettes' (Mary, Ema and two others) who stepped out front and tap danced to "Tiny Dot in the Deep Blue Sea".

Final act, Leslie and the Badgers (above) is a folk/country outfit led by Leslie Stevens and her remarkable voice. Backed by a solid backing band which includes Charlene Huang on violin. I've been so impressed with Charlene's contribution of the semi-classical violin she plays in One Trick Pony, that it was startling to see her so adept at county fiddling. They rounded out a fantastic night of entertainment that no one there will ever forget.


No comments: