Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Baby Grand - Sinnet - Presto Bando -- Velvet Lounge - Jul 13 2012

Presto Bando - This is the second straight time they appeared as a two-piece. Curse the real world with job requirements and all that nonsense. Hopefully their bass player will return for their Black Cat show early next month. As was the case last time, there was still plenty to enjoy although it sounded a fraction thinner than at the house show they previously played at. But once the wild vocals kicked in, drums and guitar were enough backing to keep things rolling. Some new material crept in along with plenty of old favorites. Any regular reader knows that I always enjoy this band, but it is fun to see a few new faces get off on one of the most unique offerings we have on the stages in DC.
Sinnet - From Boston (with connections to Milwaukee) comes this twin guitar quartet on their first tour. One guitarist handles the lead vocals and also moves over to keyboards now and then. My first impressions are that of a soulful indie rock band that knows what they are doing. But during the nicely composed opening number, they explode with an instrumental break that comes straight out of Sonic Youth (might as well, they aren't doing it anymore). The next cut had a speedy tempo with a nice pop groove working. They range from quirky rhythms to focused power as they play on. The band continues with some really creative instrumental flourishes and keep the 25-30 listeners on edge throughout their 35 minute set. This could be DMZ members mixing with Birdsongs of the Mesozoic covering Feelies songs... or not. Whatever you hear in here, this is music you'll want to hear again. Although it appears they are experienced pros, it is early in their career as Sinnet, so hopefully this is the start of something.

The Baby Grand - Speaking of early in the career, the four youthful faces here (along with a few x'ed hands) are also in the early stages of their musical life. But they have been around a bit and do show plenty of polish. They are musically straightforward with strong acoustic guitar rhythms, busy lead guitar work, and a strong rhythm section. It is pretty much straight down the middle, earnest rock music that could fit comfortably aside many styles of rock music, thanks in part to the energetic playing. There are a couple ways this could go. They could find a bit more creative twists and turns and excite listeners like me more, or they could continue on their path with sharpened songwriting and capture a more mainstream crowd. They sound like they could be good enough to do either, but we'll have to wait and see what creative juices next start to flow.

Quote of the Night: From The Baby Grand... "Can you turn down the monitor for the drums? Everything, he's going deaf... and he's selfish. He just wants to hear himself."

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