Langhorne Slim @ Joe’s Pub

Langhorne is from the dark forests of Pennsylvania but recently moved to Brooklyn. I had recently circled a review of him in one of my many music magazines as an artist to check out. Later that day, Katherine invites me to a show at Joe’s Pub featuring none other than Mr. Slim. It was fate and so we went. The opening band was quite good. Reminded me of Shivaree but with more of a bluegrass twist.

Langhorne Slim then took the stage with his raggy young band. I hate the word alt-country, so I’ll describe his music as a blend of old fashioned folk with a fucked up backwoods tone and the sounds of a jug band. His songs are full of witty lyrics and knows how to carry you through his stories of life and love. His show is very energetic and by the end you’ll be singing along. After the show we hit a local bar with the band that provided a better surrounding than the stuffy Joe’s Pub. And we drank and drank…..

Listen to a song why don’t ya. The Electric Love Letter

Enon @ Mercury Lounge

Enon comes back to New York. Finally. So it’s a very long time since I’ve seen this band last. It was over 3 years ago with the original (and amazing) band members Rick Lee, Steve Calhoon (both from Skeleton Key) and John Schmersal of Braniac. I’ve had a deep interest in this band since Braniac disbanded due to Tim Taylor’s tragic death. Being in Dayton and immersed in the music scene there, it was the low point in my musical life. Braniac was on the verge of exploding and they were taking music in such a unique direction. When I got word of John teaming up with the remnants o Skeleton Key (which had also recently disbanded) to form Enon I was elated. Their debut Believo! had some pretty incredible songs mixing junky guitars and the electro noises John was playing around with on the last Braniac album. There was much hope for this experimental idie band.

Hocus-Pocus came out and unfortunately Steve Calhoon left the band and added Toko Yasuda of Blonde Redhead. Eventually Rick Lee would leave as well and the sound changed dramatically, Although it was a better production, I felt the album was a mess.

In February 05 they released “Lost Marbles And Exploded Evidence” which is actually a collection of B-sides mainly from Hocus-Pocus era. I decided to check out the new lineup (including Matt Schulz) and the new sounds. It took me awhile to get into the new sound. They abandoned the “junky” sounds and moved into an electronic pop direction. John left most of the singing to Toko, who although cute onstage, does not have the energy to contain the sound from the band. The songs became formulaic but at least were better live than on disc. The saving grace was when they eased up on the moogy crap to perform “Rubber Car” form their first album, which I’ve always considered to be in memory of Tim Taylor.

Very few bands experiment with the potential of sound and the blending of various instruments and melodies to come up with something new. There is a constant spontaneity in Enon’s music. Although not perfect, I appreciate their constant pushing and prodding.

Marta Topferova @ Satalla

I am very lucky to have been introduced to this amazing artist. She is originally from the Czech Republic but now lives in NY. She sings in fluent Czech and Spanish. Her songs are beautiful and relaxing with a hint of Bossa Nova. She has a broad range of styles and with only a trio creates a bold sound. She has a sweet but sad voice and her latest album has more mystery in it than her last. Being only 29 (and very beautiful I might add) she has emerged as strong songwriter who can also sing with intense emotion. A must see live performance.

Here’s an mp3 from her 1st album Sueño Verde.
Vuelo De Cigüeña

I’m sad to post that Satalla and Kavehaz will be closing by the end of the year. With all these amazing venues closing for the construction of luxury condos is yet another reason why New York will no longer be the haven for artsist and musicans to live and perform.

Silver Mt. Zion @ Southpaw

So I don’t know too much about this band other than it’s an offshoot of Godspeed You Black Emperor!, which I am a big fan of. They are a much smaller ensemble than Godspeed, although over the years that number has grown and fluctuated. Their songs are clearly politically fueled and tend to have a shorter dynamic lifespan than of Godspeed. I was very excited to see them live because it was the first ever show in America, and Brooklyn no less. It was an intimate show and I was lucky enough to be in the front row. Efrim started the show explaining why there hasn’t bean any recent news of Godspeed because they turned into The Arcade Fire. That got a good chuckle from the audience. The songs were heavy and dark but the show grabbed momentum as the night progressed. With many jabs about our failing government and the war in Iraq mixed with the foreboding music, I started to feel quite charged, angry, pissed off, and yelling inside. It reminded me of my NY hardcore days but with completely different music. Leaving the show I was sure that the band was successful in what they came here to do. All music and art should be more like that.

Mozart Festival @ Lincoln Center

Got tickets to listen to some Mozart at the newly rearranged Lincoln Center. They pulled the stage down a bit and placed seating around the orchestra. Interesting idea to get the people closer to the music which I think is desperately needed in the classical music scene. There needs ot be a broader and younger audience for this incredible music which is always impressive live. Needless to say, the music was great and Lincoln Center is one of the best places in the world to listen to music. Teatre Colon in Buenos Aires is considered one of the best as well and hope ot catch a show there next year.