We arrived to a sweet and short line for press badges at the Village Voice 4Knots Festival Front Street hangout (much like Fader’s, with things to buy, DJ’s and drinks, but to pay for, with tickets), and then ran straight over to the stage since our East River Ferry was late and thus, we were late for the Eleanor Friedberger set. She still had quite a few songs left under her belt, luckily.
(And… our slightly tipsy friend had mistakenly befriended her two guitarists last Sunday at Papacito’s, setting herself up at their table, so it was amazing to see them in full 1977 mode on stage, as one of the best “backing” bands I’ve ever seen). I’m not sure why Eleanor was in striped red and white layers and long pants, but cheers to that, since she can be a rock goddess without fully breaking a sweat.
Oberhofer, yes. I’d forgotten how soft-loud-soft prog meets math they are, but so precise and vicious, and in the best way. Singer Brad Oberhofer, (once a lowly intern at Matador), is the amazing piece of gut-instinctual-movement-punk behind said band. While tuning, he mentions, “I’m not used to this, I’m used to luxury cars,” and during the set, “This song is dedicated to my grandmother, and all your grandmothers and grandfathers too.”
He says the right things to a crowd, and he and the whole band plays right along, and thus, it’s a captivating show. Just listen to “Away From You” or “I Can Go”, or any other track and you’ll be transfixed. There’s one band that did this to us before and they were from far away, in Oz, Children Collide. We haven’t seen this epic unexpected kind of tight, breathtaking rock since seeing them at the Aussie Fest after SXSW 2009. Oberhofer are our new Brooklyn torch bearers, blending the best of math rock and tight, non-prog/prog indie, tearing it up immediately to a number eleven.
The band who didn’t make it on time to play our pal Lady Bree’s fest last night at 285 Kent, Davila 666, had fans eating out of their hands, singing the words, (and, they’re from Puerto Rico!) and crowd surfing/moshing throughout most of the set, especially during the raucous “La Killer Bitch”. The fab video’s to come.
It would be hard for any band to follow, but NJ’s Titus Andronicus had the crowds wowed, preparing us all for Black Angels’ spacey, dirge-lovin’ odyssey, that love-in of dark, bluesy sunset happenings.
Video to come tomorrow, by Zabatay