Maserati / +/- / Dead Meadow @ Southpaw; Brooklyn, NY

September 17, 2005

First, let me apologize for my diatribe yesterday. This is not a livejournal. My display of emotion was unnecessary. I am supposed to be a rock, unflinching and unaffected by outside circumstances. Personal matters are not for this space.

Last night I went to Southpaw in Brooklyn to see Maserati, plus/minus and Dead Meadow. I drove in with Ian, we met Marsha outside the club and walked a few blocks down to a bar called the Patio Lounge. We had some drinks and hung out until Anthony and Zoya showed up, at which point we headed over to the club. A few more drinks, shots of Maker’s Mark, and then at about 10:00pm Maserati took the stage. With a drum set front and center, two guitarists and a bassist, they opened with a loud e-bow drone before launching into their blend of reverb-heavy angular instrumental compositions. Call it “math rock” or “post rock” or whatever, their songs stretched out over seven minutes or more, slow gradual ascents and cathartic releases. The final two songs were the most intense of the set. The last tune featured some of the most tremendous live drumming I have seen in a long time. The drummer was playing these incredible triplets on the kick drum while getting all Keith Moon with what seemed like an unrelenting series of deafening, loud fills beneath a beautiful wall of noise.

After their set I reached out for the drummer as he walked passed me. I stopped him and told him how much I enjoyed the band’s set, and that it took them long enough to make it from Athens up to New York. He mentioned how he’s actually the newest member of the band, and since he lives in New York it was inevitable that they would come up and play a show here. I thanked him, told him he did not disappoint and said I hoped to see them again in the near future. A few minutes later I spied one of the guitarists, Matt, ambling through the crowd so I stopped him and we spoke for a few minutes. I again mentioned how I’ve been waiting a few years now for them to make it up this way. He said the drummer plays in Turing Machine (who are performing tonight somewhere) and how the final two songs they played were both written within the last month. I asked about what their recording plans are, since their label (Kindercore) folded recently. Ian mentioned how they should get in contact with Temporary Residence Ltd., it seemed like their kind of label, so we talked about some of the bands on TRL. Later, when I went to pick up one of Maserati’s 7-inches, I told Matt that if I had any money I would put out a release for them and he laughed and thanked me.

+/- had their moments. Someone mentioned that they ripped off a bunch of their electronic elements from The Postal Service, but having never heard anything by that band I have no basis for comparison. They were all right, some intriguing melodies and nicely syncopated guitar playing, but we decided to duck outside a few minutes so that the nicotine addicts could fuel their cravings. At this point Marsha and Zoya decided to take off for the night, leaving the boys to be scene with the other folks who were now beginning to pile a bit more tightly into the club.

Dead Meadow took the stage a bit after 12:00 and rocked very hard for the duration of their set. They mixed in a bunch of songs from their new album (“Feathers”) with tracks from “Shivering King” and maybe others that I don’t recall well. They had some trippy little toys on stage and a fog machine that raised the temperature of the room about twenty degrees. At this point Ian was plastered and after enjoying the first bit of their set left for a few minutes and went to sit down on the floor somewhere. Dead Meadow recently lost their second guitarist, but they still managed to put on a great show as a trio. It would’ve probably sounded better to have thicker rhythm beneath Jason’s leads. But then again, they were a trio until this new album came out so the older songs sounded just fine. Great, dreamy, heavy rock.

We left during the last song of the evening and walked around looking for something to eat. We decided to drive Anthony to the subway station, and stopped down the street at a deli. After standing in line for a while Ian went outside and puked. Then came back inside and got some food and a drink, what a trooper. We bid Anthony a fond farewell, and I drove home with Ian sleeping in the passenger seat. I shouldn’t have forced that last drink on him or offered to pay for it.

When I got home I left a message for Dead Meadow telling them they put on a great show and received a very quick response thanking me for the kind words. I asked if they knew anything about tonight’s supposed show at the Cake Shop with Pelican and the Panthers (a VICE party), but I was informed that it was cancelled and that they were probably going to be at Northsix checking out the Brian Jonestown Massacre. It could be a lie, everyone seems to want an invite to that show, so I wouldn’t blame them for telling folks it was off, but who knows.

I got to sleep a little after 5:00am. Just another night out in the city.

1 comment

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    […] all over Los Angeles, it can’t have been that long… My favorite Dead Meadow story is the time Ian and I went to see them with Maserati (my first time beholding the godlike drumming of Jerry […]

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