Lightspeed Champion

Cafe concerts featuring English lads with their acoustic guitar don’t get much better than Lightspeed Champion’s recent Halloween twilight outing at Soundfix in Williamsburg. Where else could you sit and sip your café au lait, chased with a PBR, and chill out to a chorus of “Wake up, smell the semen” (from the soon-to-be-a-hit song “Midnight Surprise”?)

Lightspeed ChampionThose who only knew Dev Hynes as one-third of the gritty electro-punk Test Icicles might have been at first startled to hear his latest incarnation of troubadour songs, and most of all, his very sweet and smooth voice. A few notes in, he had everyone quite spellbound with his unexpected tunes. The lo-fi Strokes cover “Heart in a Cage” is a golden bonus in his set. It’s refreshing to hear a young guy unafraid to go out on a limb, grow a wooly beard and sing from the heart, even moreso when it’s the self-deprecating Dev, who laughingly referred to his very non-Halloween get up as “Marvin Gaye, four days before he died…”

Dev, or rather the fellow now known as Lightspeed Champion, seems unable to do wrong with his new armload of sweet but cleverly snide songs and an upcoming album on Domino, which boasts the talents of Bright Eyes’ producer Mike Mogis. This boy was definitely right to include the word “champ” in his name.–MVW/photos by Tear-n Tan