Category Archives: Live Music

The First (Unofficially Announced) SummerStage Show of 2011 Is…

The Script at Roseland (05/05/09)
The Script at Roseland
Photo: Jon Klemm

Well, it’s almost January, so of course that means it’s time to start thinking about SummerStage again. The first unofficially announced show of the 2011 season is The Script on June 4, 2011 at the Rumsey Playfield. The Script’s new album Science and Faith is set to drop in the US on January 18, 2011 on Epic Records.

In other Summerstage news, your band could snag an opening act spot in the SummerStage 2011 season and a concert at WNYC’s The Greene Space by winning WNYC’s Battle of the Boroughs Talent Quest 2011. All entries must be received no later than December 31st, 2010 at 11:59 PM.

Full details of the Battle of the Boroughs Talent Quest 2011 after the jump.

Continue reading The First (Unofficially Announced) SummerStage Show of 2011 Is…

Gaslight Anthem at Radio City: A Review

Gaslight Anthem at Radio City Music Hall (09/30/10)
Gaslight Anthem at Radio City
Photo: Tony Cano
Words: Annie Reuter

One of New Jersey’s own reviews one of New Jersey’s own at their Radio City debut. -ed.

The Gaslight Anthem Show Fan Appreciation at Radio City
By Annie Reuter

New Jersey favorites the Gaslight Anthem packed Radio City Music Hall last night for a marathon set of nearly two hours. While the band showcased songs from their entire catalogue, their gratitude to fans was apparent as frontman Brian Fallon continually thanked fans when he could find the words.

Shortly after 9 p.m. Radio City went dark while “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” played through the speakers. The band took the stage to screaming fans and powered through “High Lonesome,” “Boxer,” “We Came to Dance” and “The Diamond Church Street Choir,” an impressive variety of songs from their three full length albums before Fallon addressed the crowd for the first time.

“Radio City. We started playing in basements. Elvis might even show up. I know we’re in New York, but I imagine New Jersey is represented in the crowd tonight.”

While Gaslight Anthem has been touring non-stop over the past few years in support of their critically acclaimed sophomore release, The ’59 Sound and most recently, American Slang, playing Radio City is a definite career boost for the band. Having witnessed them live at smaller venues and outdoor settings, their shows thrive on energy from the crowd, whether it’s kids in the mosh pit or crowd surfing. Though there was no apparent moshing going on from my seats, the energy never wavered and fans were seen raising their beer cups and fists in the air during the entire set.

Energetic tracks including “Great Expectations,” “The ’59 Sound” and “Backseats” had fans singing along word for word while the more emotional “Here’s Looking At You, Kid” and “Blue Jeans and White T-Shirts,” a song Fallon dedicated to his parents, struck a chord.

“This song’s for my mom. When I was little, I used to sit on the edge of the bed and play guitar and said, ‘I want to be in a band someday.’ Whenever you say that to any self-respecting parent they say, ‘What?! You want to do what?’ But then they kind of came around and go, ‘Well, alright. You don’t want to go out. You go sit there and play that guitar.’”

Fallon explained how they encouraged him to pursue music, and compared him to everyone from Bob Dylan to Elvis Presley.

“After a long while they go, ‘Hey, you’re not so bad.’ And then, a couple years go by and your mom thinks you’re Bob Dylan. She’s like, ‘Bob Dylan, he don’t write songs as good as you do. After it’s said and done, nobody does. Elvis Presley doesn’t.’ That’s what they’re there for. Your mom is there to encourage you.”

Songs like “The Patient Ferris Wheel” saw Jersey fans throw their fists in the air as Fallon sang, “I never felt so strange standing in the Jersey rain.” Earlier in the night, he told the crowd he made sure it didn’t rain for their big NYC gig.

“I spoke to my people about the weather. I got people in the weather department. So I said, ‘Could you hold off with all the tornados and things? Just tonight. These people are nice people, they come from New Jersey.’”
After years of touring, Gaslight Anthem proved they’re the real deal last night at Radio City. Fallon’s relentless vocals combined with Alex Rosamilla and Alex Levine’s guitar interludes and Benny Horowitz’s solid percussion impressed throughout their 25-song set. As the band came back onstage during their six-song encore, Fallon once again thanked the audience.

“Thank you all who came out here tonight, some of you from the basements on up. I’m sure everything that I meant to say will come to me tomorrow. Give your phone number at the door and I’ll call you tomorrow and thank you properly. But thank you, honestly from our hearts to you guys, there are no words. Thanks to everybody who believed in this band. We wouldn’t be able to do it without all of you, our families and our friends. I’ll never forget this my whole life.”

Full setlist and a few videos after the jump.

Continue reading Gaslight Anthem at Radio City: A Review

More Matador21 Tickets On Sale Today and Box Set

The 21st Anniversary Matabox
Matador 21 Box Set

Today is your last chance to get tickets to the Matador Records 21st Anniversary Weekend in Las Vegas, NV.

We will be releasing a small quantity of GA tickets for Matador 21 TOMORROW TODAY by lottery. Winners will be picked at random and notified on Tuesday, September 14th at 9:00am. Winners will have 24hrs to purchase their tickets. If they fail to do so, a new winner will be selected the following day at 9:00am. All winners will be given the option to purchase 2 tickets at $250 each + service fees and taxes.

This is your last chance (we hope!) to be part of the greatest weekend in human history To enter the lottery please send an email to with the title, “21 LOTTERY” in the subject line of your message.

More about the 6 CD Matador Records retrospective charity box set and double vinyl after the jump.

Continue reading More Matador21 Tickets On Sale Today and Box Set

Hugh Cornwell Has A New “Free” Album Out Now, Tour Dates + Media Club Pics (Vancouver, BC)

Hugh Cornwell at The Media Club in Vancouver, BC (04/02/10)
Hugh Cornwell at the Media Club
Download: Hugh Cornwell – “Please Don’t Put Me On A Slow Boat To Trowbridge”

I’m never rejoining The Stranglers. If you heard that from someone, it’s bullocks!
Hugh Cornwell (April 2, 2010)

With plenty of snarl left in him, ex-Stranglers frontman Hugh Cornwell rolled into Vancouver, BC last week to promote his new record, Hooverdam (with emphasis on the dam!). Hugh’s band was rounded out by no-nonsense bass player Caroline Campbell (who let’s face it, was not afraid to show off her assets) and gonzo drummer Chris Bell. I was half expecting to see a straight ahead punk rock set filled with 3 minute songs and no breaks, but Cornwell was witty, engaging and still pretty dexterous on the electric guitar. By the end of the night, Cornwell had the capacity crowd of frat boys, young punks and folks who might have been around to see The Stranglers play back in the day, begging for more.

A former Gants Hill boy and original Stranglers fan came with me to the show and here’s what he had to say about it:

Seeing Hugh Cornwell perform at The Media Club evoked memories of seeing him when he was a member of The Stranglers. That was back in a gritty Old London Town some thirty odd years plus during the rise the of new wave/punk scene going on at the time.

Despite being in his early 60s, Cornwell showed no signs of slowing down on Friday night, especially on guitar. Though not quite a virtuoso, Cornwell showed impressive facility with his instrument (even amidst some apparent technical difficulties), certainly more than you might expect when you hear the words “punk rock guitarist”. Also, while he doesn’t have a tremendous singing voice, it works for the songs, I’d compare him to Lou Reed, but with a little more range. Drummer Chris Bell kept of the frenetic pace all night and bass player Caroline Campbell, (looking a bit like a young Kate Bush I might add), emulated that slightly sinister sound that many of The Stranglers songs had.

Not being too familiar with Mr. Cornwell’s solo material, I was hoping for large dose Stranglers songs and Hugh did not disappoint. The set combined tracks from his new solo record Hooverdam, along with some classic Stranglers tunes, such as “Peaches”, “No More Hero’s”, “Golden Brown” as well as a fuzzed out psychedelic version of Dionne Warwick’s “Walk on By”. Between songs there was plenty of banter between Hugh and the crowd which was made up mainly of blokes of a certain age. All in all for around ninety minutes Hugh and the band served up some good solid entertainment that mixed his new material without forgetting that good old stuff.

[Editor’s Note: I asked Hugh’s roadie for the setlist and was told I couldn’t have it because there were “10 more shows to go”. When I asked again if I could just take a picture of it, I was ignored.]

Unfortunately for us East Coasters, Hugh won’t be making the trip to NYC on this outing, he finishes up his short US tour on April 10 in Chicago. The new album, however, is available as a free (and legal) download over here.

More Hugh Cornwell US and UK tour dates and pics from the Media Club show after the jump.

Continue reading Hugh Cornwell Has A New “Free” Album Out Now, Tour Dates + Media Club Pics (Vancouver, BC)

Harper Blynn Touring (SXSW, City Winery) + Mercury Lounge Pics

Harper Blynn at Mercury Lounge (02/20/10)
Harper Blynn at Mercury Lounge
Photo: Alexis Maindrault

Harper Blynn (formerly Pete & J) are at SXSW right now but after the party is over in Austin they’ll head out on a tour which will eventually wind its way back to NYC and a show at the City Winery on March 30 with Audra Mae.

Their new album, Loneliest Generation, (which was previously available on iTunes and, will have a “proper” release on May 11 on the band’s own imprint, Baby Jackal Records. The folks from recently caught up with Harper Blynn as part of their SXSW 2010 preview series, here’s a little excerpt from that interview:

Describe your sound in your own words.

Pete: There was a girl at the show last night, the way she described the music was that it sounds like Fleet Foxes, but with pop songs, or like MGMT, but with big three-part harmonies. Which I really like, but it’s hard to make comparisons with modern music. There isn’t a lot of modern stuff with big harmonies that also feels uplifting. We love harmonies in music. Obviously, with Fleet Foxes, Grizzly Bear and others, there is a big psych folk harmony movement, but it’s not, generally speaking, uplifting music. It’s not really pop music, and our music is definitely pop music. We’re kind of hook-mongers.

How did your band form? When did you change from Pete and J to Harper Blynn?

J: Pete and I met in college, we didn’t really have a band, so we were writing music, just the two of us, and we did some shows with a drummer, but a lot of shows with just the two of us, as Pete and J. We started to write more and more upbeat stuff, that needed to be played by a band. It just got to the point where we were always playing with the band. This lineup has been together about a year now, and touring around as a four-piece band called Pete and J doesn’t make sense. At a certain point, it confuses people. The music led us there, ultimately. []

More Harper Blynn tour dates and pictures from their Mercury Lounge gig after the jump.

Continue reading Harper Blynn Touring (SXSW, City Winery) + Mercury Lounge Pics

Editors UK Tour Starts Today + Terminal 5 Pics

Editors at Terminal 5 (02/19/10)
Editors at Terminal 5
Photo: Jon Klemm

UK’s Editors were in town last month to promote the stateside release of their latest album, the synth heavy, In This Light and on This Evening. Unlike most of the music world, they’re skipping SXSW to commence their sold out UK tour which starts today (March 19) and runs until the end of the March. Here’s what the NY Press had to say about their recent T5 show:

Editors did not hold back, playing to the nearly sold out crowd until everyone was moving to the music and singing along. Early in the set, Tom Smith interrupted “Lights,” saying, “Fuck! This is way off tune.” But the audience, which quickly became a veritable chorus line, didn’t seem to have noticed. Colorful lights, and at one point a strobe, bounced off the musicians. Smith alternated between guitar and piano, hunching over each in turn as though they pained him. His distinctive, voice—like molasses meets vinegar—saves the new stuff from being too generic, but it drones on a bit nevertheless and certainly doesn’t spell the next level for Editors. Happily, less than half the set was off the latest album, with the rest fairly evenly split between the previous two: An End Has Its Start and The Back Room.

T5, packed just about to the gills, was the perfect setting for Editors’ anthemic music. The show maintained a sense of intimacy even as the adrenaline of a much larger venue coursed through it. If the band’s next album doesn’t stagnate, the stadium rock predictions made of it with the 2006 debut may yet bear fruition. [NY Press]

In other Editors news, the band will be releasing “Last Day”, a brand new song, on limited edition vinyl as part of Record Store Day on April 17, 2010.

All Editors UK tour dates, more pictures and the setlist from the Terminal 5 show after the jump.

Continue reading Editors UK Tour Starts Today + Terminal 5 Pics

Broken Bells at MHOW: Photos and A Review

Broken Bells at MHOW (03/10/10)
Broken Bells
Photos by Jon Klemm, words by Chris Hadley

I’d like to welcome new Bumpershine contributor Chris Hadley, aka @showaweek, who was on hand last week to witness the NYC debut of the new James Mercer/Danger Mouse “supergroup” Broken Bells. -ed.

Broken Bells at the Music Hall of Williamsburg
by Chris Hadley

I was introduced to Broken Bells by the best episode of NPR’s All Songs Considered podcast that I can remember, which included new tracks by some of my favorite current bands: Local Natives, Yeasayer, Freelance Whales and, of course, Broken Bells. Bob could just as well have opened the show with, “Hey Chris, here is what you’ll be listening to for the next four months.” People often ask me how I find out about new music, and without fail the first thing I tell them is All Songs Considered.

Broken Bells certainly looks good on paper: Danger Mouse, a veritable behemoth of a producer, and James Mercer, the singer/songwriter behind the The Shins. I loved the first single, “The High Road“, immediately. It has a distinctively Shins-y feel, for Mercer’s voice is beautifully unique, and the production is naturally exquisite, with Danger Mouse’s identifiable fingerprint. The collaboration reeked of a dynamic duo, and although I was eagerly awaiting the release of the album, as the show grew closer I found myself too goddamned busy every night and kept forgetting to listen to it, so I eventually decided to avoid doing so. I wanted to go into the show as blind as possible, which is what I did.

Going to the Music Hall of Williamsburg is like having a dream about the Bowery Ballroom. It’s so much like Bowery, and in your dream you know you’re at Bowery, but it’s terribly confusing and there are rooms that look like the outside but are actually the inside and there are staircases all over the damn place that lead to sections of the venue that you didn’t even know existed. I’ve only been to the Music Hall a few times, and every time it’s an adventure trying to find the floor of the venue. But we did, only a few minutes before Broken Bells took the stage.

I was a little worried that much of the texture of the live show would be sampled or produced from a recording, and was mighty relieved to see seven people walk out on stage. They formed a musical assembly line, each guy doing his little bit to form a wonderfully full sound. The visuals were simple, a projection over the entire stage, band and all, with seemingly aged imagery that often played off that spiky pink globe that they appear to have adopted as their logo. The show exhibited a generally modest atmosphere, which was pleasantly surprising, given all that Danger Mouse and James Mercer have accomplished at the indie level.

The first few songs sounded very much like each other, and just as my interest began to wane, they played “The Ghost Inside“, at which point I started dancing a bit and taking notes so I could locate that song later. Broken Bells effectively found their groove, which reminded me at times of David Bowie, and I ended up loving the show and wishing it hadn’t ended so soon.

I’m a sucker for a good cover, and there’s no better time for a clever cover than the encore. I don’t know that I would have opened a show with my most recognizable song, as Broken Bells did with “The High Road”, but playing it at the end of the set or for the encore is just lame. So Broken Bells comes back after a short post-set breather and plays Neil Young’s “Don’t Let It Bring You Down“, much to the enjoyment of many folks in the audience. Then, just as Mary and I were putting our coats on, James Mercer walked to the mic and sang, “Aaaahhh”, and right away I recognized it as one of my favorite songs of all time: “Crimson and Clover” by Tommy James and the Shondells.

The show was quite good, the encore fucking incredible. There is some top-notch music being made right now, so please for the love of god get out there and see some of it.

More photos from the show and some limited tour dates after the jump.

Continue reading Broken Bells at MHOW: Photos and A Review

Plants and Animals Touring (SXSW, Bowery), New Record Coming Soon + MHOW Pics

Plants and Animals at MHOW (03/10/10)
Plants and Animals
Photo: Jon Klemm

With their new album La La Land set to drop on April 20, Plants and Animals have just announced a major North American tour starting with a bunch of appearances at SXSW. They’ll be playing the Bowery Ballroom on June 9 (Buy Tickets), but they were also just here last week supporting Broken Bells at MHOW where they managed to put the “power” back in power trio. They also just released a brand new video for “The Mama Papa” which was directed and conceived by Sinbad Richardson, and stars Plants and Animals and as well as the actor, Joe Cobden.

More Plants and Animals tour dates, MHOW pics, and a video for “The Mama Papa” after the jump.

Continue reading Plants and Animals Touring (SXSW, Bowery), New Record Coming Soon + MHOW Pics

Shout Out Louds Played MHOW, New Mini “Work” Doc, Touring w/ Freelance Whales (Webster Hall)

Shout Out Louds at MHOW (03/01/10)
Shout Out Louds at MHOW
Photo: Jon Klemm

In February, Sweden’s The Shout Out Louds released their third record on Merge entitled Work, and they were just in town to play a sold out show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on March 1. (They also played two more impromptu shows after that, one at Pianos and one at White Slab on Delancey and Allen.) If you didn’t catch of any of those shows, have no fear though, the band is heading out on tour again and they’ll be back in town May 5 at Webster Hall, once again with “Brooklyn buzz band” Freelance Whales (Buy Tickets).

In addition to the upcoming tour, the band just issued a mini-documentary on the making of Work titled “Shout Out Louds … at Work.” Directed by the band’s bassist and renowned video director Ted Malmros, “Shout Out Louds … at Work” provides a deep glimpse into the process that went into the creation of the songs that make up the new studio album. Esquire Magazine recently commended the band and their track “Walls,” naming it March’s “Perfect Pop Song of the Month” and describing it as a “truly memorable moment — too rarely does a modern pop song leave you humming an old-fashioned man-made piano hook.”

Through the alluring moving images and stills taken from interviews with the band and Phil Ek, their producer, to the Washington woodlands where Work was recorded, the mini-documentary presents itself as a diary that captures all of the emotions evoked from the pressure, as well as the excitement, of creating such a highly anticipated release.

Watch “Shout Out Louds … at Work” and order Work on CD, LP and digital download in the Merge store.

Also, preview the songs from Work in a short video made by Carl’s brother Gustaf von Arbin at their Vimeo page.

More photos and tour dates after the jump.

Continue reading Shout Out Louds Played MHOW, New Mini “Work” Doc, Touring w/ Freelance Whales (Webster Hall)

Avi Buffalo at Bowery Ballroom, New Album Out In April, More Tour Dates

Avi Buffalo at Bowery Ballroom (03/03/10)
Avi Buffalo at Bowery Ballroom
Words by Annie Reuter, Photos by Jon Klemm
Download: Avi Buffalo – “What’s In It For?”

The new record by 18 year-old singer/songwriter Avi Buffalo (aka Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg) doesn’t come out until April 27 on Sub Pop, but right now he and his band are in the midst of a cross country tour with Oakland’s Rogue Wave. They played the Bowery Ballroom on March 3 and Annie Reuter was on hand to file this report. -ed.

Avi Buffalo at Bowery Ballroom
by Annie Reuter

Acoustic singer-songwriter JBM (aka Jesse Marchant) kicked off the evening with a 30 minute set of emotional-filled ballads. Switching gears from guitar, drums and harmonica, the one man band impressed. So quiet, the crowd was receptive throughout his echoing vocals and delicate finger picking.

Sub Pop’s Avi Buffalo were up next, providing a change of pace with their energetic indie rock songs. With solid musical accompaniment, the band’s blend of atmospheric keyboard features, anthemic electric guitar interludes and wavering vocals brought intensity to the room.

While tracks like “What’s It In For” and “Where’s Your Dirty Mind” embody catchy melodies, it is perhaps their musical prowess that stood out most to the audience. Each song played throughout their 45 minute set encompassed stand-out instrumental breaks showcasing frontman Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg’s killer guitar chops. At first listen, Avi Buffalo’s music comes across as emotional ballads but by mid-song the accompanying guitar riffs quickly change the song’s attitude.

Pining for love on “Jessica,” Zahner-Isenberg sings, “Sometimes I feel like you’re all I’ve got.” Starting the track off slowly, the audience could feel the emotion throughout his singing style. Ending with more angst, an electric guitar interlude aggressively switched gears to which Zahner-Isenberg sang, “I can’t tell when something’s real/Nobody tells me how they feel.”

Whether it was their heart-thumping experimental bass and drum beats or shared vocals between frontman Zahner-Isenberg and keyboardist Rebecca Coleman, Avi Buffalo impressed concertgoers. While many of their songs can be easily pictured being heard in indie films, it was their stage presence and interaction with the audience left the greatest impact.

More Avi Buffalo pictures, album art and tour dates after the jump.

Continue reading Avi Buffalo at Bowery Ballroom, New Album Out In April, More Tour Dates