Checking into Buzzbands LA’s stellar afternoon party, Dear Boy took the stage in their black clad glory. Bits of Franz Ferdinand and Catherine Wheel swirled about the energetic performance, and by the end, most of the guys had actually rocked their sunglasses off.
Then a stop into the convention center to see the amazing Laura Marling, a petite poet who knows how to do some amazing things with an acoustic guitar and turn a very clever phrase. Plenty of new music from her album due out next week.
Sweet strumminess came that evening from Girlpool, a Philly duo that harmonize like nobody’s business and had the earnest and bittersweet thing down. Caustic and funny and heartwarming too.
The night belonged to Aussie Courtney Barnett, who played her entire album and wowed the Stubbs patio with her rowdy guitar work and enthusiastic and biting charm. Like the Runaways meet the Velvet Underground while drunk on cheap beer… How does she remember all those words?
Out of the UK tore Only Real, working up the outdoor stage at Cheer Up Charlie’s with a punky quick fire rap like delivery that whipped up the crowd.
Twin Peaks, hailing from Chicago, did an amazing job making people forget that the Damned were playing next door. Despite both bands being outdoors and literally separated by one concrete wall, Twin Peaks truly ripped it up, mosh pits and crowdsurfing and all.
Time delays sort of ruled the rest of the evening (and therefore, show misses and rescheduling), so the last band of the night to barely hit the stage did so with force… Philly’s Sheer Mag, full of scuzzy classic rock bravado (in the veins of Thin Lizzy or Kiss) filtered through punk rock (a la X or the Gossip) didn’t even really need a sound check to blast Hotel Vegas out the front door anyway.