Buddhapalooza now complete, it was time for School of Seven Bells at The Earl. For those of you keeping score at home, it was my first time at The Earl since Cults back on March 6 - over a month ago, possibly a new record for me for Earl abstinence.
Brooklyn's Exitmusic opened, and started their set with The Sea.
This was a case where I was probably more looking forward to seeing the opener than the headliner. Nothing against School of Seven Bells, but Exitmusic has become a recent favorite of mine, and as you can see below, their EP From Silence has been on heavy rotation on my Spotify playlist.
If their singer looks familiar to you, it's because Aleksa Palladino played Angela Darmody on HBO's Boardwalk Empire - one of the most sympathetic, endearing, and innocent characters among the crooks, schemers, and killers on the show.
Exitmusic delivered everything I could have possibly wanted from them (including a stand-up drummer!), and I look forward to hearing more of their music in the future.
Following Exitmusic's set, New York's School of Seven Bells took the stage.
School of Seven Bells is primarily the duo of Benjamin Curtis (guitar and bass) and Alejandra Deheza. Ms. Deheza's identical twin sister, Claudia, left the band a year or so ago, but they brought along a keyboardist on this tour who not only supplied the bass lines when Mr. Curtis was on guitar, but also nicely provided the harmonies on the older songs written for Claudia. Some of my favorite moments of their set were when the two vocalists would sing the lyrics in a rhythmic, staccato style in perfect unison, one syllable at a time, while Mr. Curtis floated guitar lines over the beat created by their words. The effect reminded me a little of Austra's work with Tesseomancy.
The band, except for the drummer, performed in front of two illuminated, three-ring Ballantine Beer symbols (although I was probably the only one in the audience old enough to remember Ballantine). The poor drummer was nowhere to be seen, lost behind the lights of the rings.
Impressively, back when Claudia was still in the band, the three lead members got identical tattoos of the old sigil as can be seen in the video for their song Windstorm, a rare display of band unity.
Thanks and a tip of the hat to our friends at Ohm Park!