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Mac DeMarco at Bowery Ballroom (September 23, 2017)

By Will Oliver, November 14th 2017

The same night that Mac DeMarco played to a sold out crowd at Radio City Music Hall – his largest show here to date – he announced that he’d play a much smaller show the very next day back at Bowery Ballroom (where we saw him play just two years ago).

I wasn’t able to attend the show at Radio City but this was a much better option as Mac is really meant to be seen in a room such as Bowery where he can literally use it as his personal playground. The show had a good energy from the very start, with the crowd moving around non-stop and belting back every word.
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The Mattson 2 at LPR (August 25th, 2017)

By Anthony Bauer, November 2nd 2017 — with 1 comment

Earlier this year one of the best and maybe most underrated albums of 2017 was released, Star Stuff, a collaborative album (out now via Company Records) between Chaz Bear (formally Chaz Bundick, aka Toro y Moi) and The Mattson 2. The album saw Bear let loose and get jazzy while the Mattson’s get funky, and it truly was a perfect match for both artists. Fast forward a few months and The Mattson 2 made their return back to New York City (sans Chaz) for a small run of shows on the East Coast in support of Star Stuff including a stop at Le Poisson Rogue.

The identical twins Jared (on guitar) and Jonathan (on drums) create stunningly beautiful music rooted in jazz with trace elements of psych rock that creates one hell of a show. A good example of this was the opening song “Yeppers” which also happens to be off of another¬†collaborative effort the Mattson’s have worked on, 2009’s Ray Barbee Meets the Mattson 2,¬†where they teamed up with skateboarding legend Ray Barbee. “Yeppers” was the perfect way to kick off the night that was filled with both old and new tunes that spanned all of the Mattson’s discography.

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Grizzly Bear at Public Arts (August 23, 2017)

By Will Oliver, October 17th 2017

Grizzly Bear will headline Brooklyn Steel for three shows in November, but back on August 23 they played a very intimate show at new venue Public Arts to celebrate the release of new album Painted Ruins via RCA Records.

This was my first time seeing Grizzly Bear since their set at Governors Ball in 2013, making it a much more intimate experience. It was my first time at the venue, which felt like a Mercury Lounge sized room with the aesthetic of Terminal 5. A bit of an odd place for Grizzly Bear but when you get to see them in a tiny room like this, who am I to complain?

The setlist featured many new cuts from Painted Ruins, but also a selection of newer favorites like “Two Weeks,” “While You Wait For The Others,” and “Sleeping Ute,” as well as old school cuts like “Shift.” There was surprisingly nothing from Yellow House, giving us even more reason to return for more at Brooklyn Steel.

Even so, the band was in great spirits and just happy to be sharing these songs with a live audience back in New York, where they felt right at home.

Find the setlist posted below, along with a gallery of photos.

Grizzly Bear Setlist:

1. Four Cypresses
2. Losing All Sense
3. Yet Again
4. Cut-Out
5. Fine for Now
6. Speak in Rounds
7. Glass Hillside
8. Ready, Able
9. Mourning Sound
10. Sleeping Ute
11. Systole
12. Two Weeks
13. Foreground
14. Three Rings
15. While You Wait for the Others
16. Sky Took Hold

Encore:

17. Shift
18. Sun in Your Eyes

Mew at Bowery Ballroom (August 3, 2017)

By Will Oliver, August 30th 2017

It still perplexes me that Danish rockers Mew aren’t able to play huge places here in America, despite doing so back at home and elsewhere. Their music just has this natural larger-than-life quality that sounds huge when you’re blasting them at home, but on an entirely different level live. They deserve to be playing much larger places than the likes of Bowery Ballroom (or Webster Hall), but considering I get to see a band of their quality in such a great tiny venue, I really can’t complain.

They have been consistently putting out great, mostly overlooked records (at least here) for 20 years now and returned earlier this year with their seventh album, Visuals (released via Play It Again Sam). They’re currently touring in support of the album and kicked off the U.S. leg of their tour with a performance at Bowery Ballroom on August 3.
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All photos by Dave Scholten

On June 16 experimental indie rockers Deerhoof played two shows at The Bell House, an early and late show. They played a few new songs off of their new album Mountain Moves, which they will release via Joyful Noise Recordings on September 8.

Our photographer Dave Scholten was at the late show (Deerhoof began their set around midnight) at The Bell House and captured photos of Deerhoof’s set. Find some photos posted below, along with the setlist.
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The Drums at House Of Vans (June 7, 2017)

By Will Oliver, June 24th 2017

The Drums have endured many changes over the years, but recently suffered it’s most significant loss with the departure of founding member Jacob Graham. With the release of fourth album “Abysmal Thoughts” (released via Anti- Records), The Drums now operates as the solo project of Jonny Pierce.

Pierce wrote and played every instrument on the album, resulting in one of the most personal recordings of his career. There is the sense that this is a very different album from him, but it has that signature summer-misery hybrid that he could make in his sleep at this point.


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Oh Wonder at Rough Trade NYC (May 25, 2017)

By Will Oliver, June 14th 2017 — with 1 comment

London indie-pop duo Oh Wonder (the duo of Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West) are returning in July with new album Ultralife (via Republic Records). The record isn’t out for another month, but the duo have been out on the road sharing some of the new material in-between their many festival dates. This included a small show on May 25 at Rough Trade NYC, the same place that they made their live debut here back in 2015.

A lot has changed for the group since then, included a much bigger audience (they last played T5 and will return to Brooklyn Steel this fall), so to see them delight the sold out crowd in a space like Rough Trade was a real treat (we previously caught them at MHOW). I am not normally into pop music (as anyone who has read this blog for any amount of time knows) but the joyous and infectious music that Vander Gucht and West churn out is infectious and undeniably wins you over in no time.

Find photos from their performance, as well as opener Charlotte Cardin, posted below, along with the setlist.

Oh Wonder Setlist:

1. Livewire
2. Without You
3. Shark
4. Dazzle
5. Lose It
6. Ultralife
7. All We Do
8. Landslide
9. High on Humans
10. Body Gold
11. Lifetimes
12. Drive

Encore:

13. Midnight Moon
14. Technicolour Beat

Charlotte Cardin:

Oh Wonder:

Marian Hill at Brooklyn Steel (May 22nd, 2017)

By Dana Pacifico, June 13th 2017

(All photos by Dana Pacifico)

Marian Hill have had themselves a whirlwind of a year, being the most Shazam’d artist of 2016 after the release of their debut album Act One, which was released via Republic Records. But this Brooklyn born duo haven’t seemed to let it get to their heads. Earlier this year they played a Steve Madden show at Music Hall of Williamsburg to a sold out crowd and they have returned to Brooklyn just two months later for a performance at the gorgeous new venue, Brooklyn Steel.
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Metallica at Nassau Coliseum (May 17, 2017)

By Will Oliver, May 24th 2017

All photos by Bryan Lasky

Metal greats Metallica have been touring hard non-stop as a part of their “Worldwired Tour” following the release of their 2016 album Hardwired… to Self-Destruct.

Following a show at MetLife Stadium, Metallica played to a sold out crowd at Nassau Coliseum, actually the only show of the tour not played at a stadium (but still not quite as small the last time we saw them). This made it something pretty special for those die-hard fans who were able to grab a ticket.
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