Blog Archives

Spacin': December 14, 2014 Glasslands – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

January 27, 2015


Spacin‘ were the right kind of band to see in my last time at Glasslands. Live, they’re not a fussy bunch: They take the stage, launch into their thing, and sear your ears without pretense. They’re not guaranteeing an upscale kind of rock show; this lo-fi Philly band is guaranteeing a good time. Likewise, even in its quasi-DIY last incarnation, Glasslands was never trying to be a slick-sheened rock club. Glasslands wanted you to feel welcome as soon as you got in the door, and to have a blast.

Although this was a different formation than the Spacin’/Purling Hiss beast I saw at Hopscotch a few months earlier, Spacin’ played several numbers from that set as well as some others I have come to know well. The band’s cover of MC5’s “American Ruse”, heavily retooled in Spacin’s image, is always a high point. As that eight-minute rocker wound down, the band segued into a psychedelic intro that led into the bread-and-butter mid-set of “Human Condition” followed by “Sunshine No Shoes”. For the band’s moment on the Glasslands stage, they played the appropriate-enough “Empty Mind”, with its heavy-chugging bass line and ample opportunity for exploration.

Even if we won’t be able to visit Glasslands anymore, the spirit of the place will live on elsewhere. Where there are bands and fans in need of a real home, a place where you feel less like a customer and more like a welcome friend, there will be right-minded people there to fill that gap.

I recorded this set with our installed sound system at Glasslands and a soundboard feed by Josh Thiel. The sound quality is quite good and much better than the Spacin’/Hiss set earlier this year, but it’s still gritty enough not to confuse anyone what this is about.

Download the complete set: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete set:

Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Josh Thiel) + Naiant X-R (PAS, DFC)>Roland R-26>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (mix down, fades)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, harmonic exciter, imaging)>Audacity 2.0.5 (tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

01 Over Uneasy
02 American Ruse [MC5]>
03 Human Condition
04 Sunshine No Shoes
05 Empty Mind

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Spacin’, check them out on Facebook, and buy their album Deep Thuds from Midheaven Mailorder.

Rhyton: December 10, 2014 Union Pool – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

January 22, 2015


The other times we’ve seen Rhyton, the sets have tended toward new or unreleased material. That made this outing at Union Pool all the more of a treat, as we were introduced to three selections of brand-new material from their third record, Kykeon. The show kicked off with the Mediterranean flavor of “Topkapi” which featured frontman/guitarist Dave Shuford rocking the bouzouki, a Greek folk instrument that Shuford demonstrated his mastery of on his album Arghiledes. Kykeon means “to mix” in Greek, we’re told on Thrill Jockey‘s page, and that’s exactly what these songs felt like, as we got to hear “Siren in Byblos” and the “disco mix” of “Pannychis”, which built on some of “Topkapi’s” themes but expanded to surf and even vaguely pop (by Rhyton’s standards) motifs. Judging one piece of the Rhyton work against another is difficult, as the crew’s material is so varied, but this set represented some of the band’s most accessible work to date, and arguably some of their very best.

You can catch Rhyton tomorrow night at Trans-Pecos at 8 p.m. Be there.

I recorded this set in our usual manner for the venue, with Schoeps MK4V microphones and a soundboard feed by the house engineer, Robb. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Union Pool
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard + Schoeps MK4V>KCY>Z-PFA>Sound Devices USBPre2>>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter, stereo image)>Audacity 2.0.3 (tracking, amplify, balance, downsample)>FLAC ( level 8 )

01 Topkapi
02 Siren in Byblos
03 Pannychis (Disco Mix)

If you enjoyed this set, PLEASE SUPPORT Rhyton, visit their website, and buy Kykeon and their other records from Thrill Jockey Records.

Obits: November 22, 2014 Brooklyn Night Bazaar – FLAC/MP3/Full Set Streaming

January 22, 2015

[photos by acidjack]

We pointed out in a review of Obits four years ago that “there is something universal about Obits’ gritty garage guitar roots-rock, and when its delivered by four pros with impressive veteran resumes” and indeed, that was brought home at the Brooklyn Night Bazaar as the band closed, rather than opened (as in that old review), a show stacked with impressive bands (three of which have been posted so far). Obits do promise the musicianship of grizzled vets while maintaining the devil-may-care attitude that defines their genre. This show surveyed all of the band’s recent catalog, capping with an absolutely awesome cover of Willie Nelson’s “Milk Cow Blues”. Lucky for everyone involved, the bazaar’s attendees knew that artisanal scarves and handmade jewelry were the wrong thing to focus on during this set. A rock show like this demands attention, and it earned it.

I recorded this set in the same manner as the Survival Knife recording. While the room presented some challenges, the sound is still quite good. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Brooklyn Night Bazaar
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard w/ onstage mics (engineer: Kenny) + Schoeps MK41 (LOC, PAS)>KCY>Z-PFA>Sound Devices USBPre2>>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter, imaging)>Audacity 2.0.5 (fades, tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

01 [inro]
02 One Cross Apiece
03 No Fly List
04 Run
05 Everything Looks Better In the Sun
06 It’s Sick
07 Operation Bikini
08 Two-Headed Coin
09 Killer
10 Lilies In the Street
11 Spun Out
12 Refund
13 Widow of My Dreams
14 [banter]
15 Milk Cow Blues [Willie Nelson]

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Obits, visit their website, and buy their records at their online repository.

Steve Gunn: January 11, 2015 Rough Trade – FLAC/MP3/Streaming Full Set

January 15, 2015

[photos by Jill Harrison]

One of the very best songs on Steve Gunn‘s Way Out Weather is a song inspired by Steve’s former noisy neighbor. In lesser hands, such banal subject matter might result in a bit of a dud. But Gunn turns the humble beginnings of “Milly’s Garden” into something wonderful and universal, a meditation on unease and the desire to move on. We last saw Gunn at Rough Trade in October, with his full band in tow, so this was a very different, but equally special kind of performance. Celebrating the first anniversary of the once-troubled (by noise complaints, at least) venue, Gunn played this gig solo but left the songs’ guitar explorations. Again, in lesser hands, a ten-plus minute “Old Strange” as a solo opener might not work — but Gunn’s kickoff to the night was magical. Poking fun at his trademark relaxed demeanor, Steve warned the Sunday afternoon crowd at the outset that they might fall asleep, but the house gave him their rapt attention, hanging on words shorn of everything surrounding them but his lone guitar. Gunn was in fine form, making us laugh in between songs that he played with dead-serious intent. To put an exclamation mark on the evening, Gunn closed with “Lurker”, which first debuted on the Three Lobed Recordings boxed set and was a treat as a full-band version back in October.

Since its inception, Rough Trade has been a valuable add to a neighborhood whose venues are depleting rapidly. Even if its surroundings may be fancier than the DIY spots that came before it, hosting an artist like Steve Gunn for your anniversary show proves that the Rough Trade folks intend to remain a credit to what this neighborhood was.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK41 microphones and a soundboard feed from house engineer Kyle Lawrence. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show: 

Steve Gunn
Rough Trade (1st Year Anniversary)
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Schoeps MK41 (FOB/DFC/PAS)>KC5>CMC6>Sound Devices USBPre2 + Soundboard (engineer: Kyle Lawrence)>>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, harmonic exciter)>Audacity 2.0.5 (tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 57:47]
01 [intro banter]
02 Old Strange
03 Shadow Bros
04 Water Wheel
05 [banter2]
06 Wildwood
07 [banter3]
08 Way Out Weather
09 [banter4]
10 Milly’s Garden
11 [banter5]
12 Lurker

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Steve Gunn, visit his website, and buy his albums, all of which have “buy” links here.


Deer Tick (performing Devo’s “Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!”): December 29, 2014 Brooklyn Bowl – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

January 12, 2015

[photos by acidjack]

Deer Tick celebrated their tenth anniversary as a band this year. In that ten-year span, they’ve pursued a musical vision that’s almost proudly unpopular, serving up Replacements-inspired traditional rock n’ roll during a time when the sampler became king. Not quite retro enough to attract that crowd, nor cutting-edge enough to make the critics swoon, the middle ground they pursued turned out to be a hit with one group that did matter — fans. They showed up in droves, on freezing weekday nights during a busy part of the year, to watch the band play a series of anniversary shows at Brooklyn Bowl that promised a new cover album each night, and slews of special guests. The band’s prowess as a cover band has been well-known for a while, popularized by their Nirvana-covering in particular.

Kurt Cobain loved the New Wave greats Devo, so it felt fitting to join Deer Tick for their cover of the band’s landmark album Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! on the Monday night before New Year’s Eve. Joined at times by opener The Districts and former guitarist Ian O’Neill, the appropriately dressed “Deervo” didn’t let us down, giving renditions that hewed closely to the originals while adding John McCauley’s signature vocal grit. After burning through that 38-minute record, the band took a quick breather until returning as themselves for a second set that also leaned heavily on covers, from NRBQ’s “I Got A Rocket In My Pocket” to the closing medley of Townes Van Zandt’s “White Freightliner Blues” and the unavoidable 80s classic “La Bamba”. McCauley’s wife Vanessa Carlton was in tow, joining the band on its own “In Our Time”. Deer Tick’s onstage antics may have mellowed some, probably for the better, but their music is still showing all the energy that drew those crowds in the first place. Here’s to another ten years.

I recorded this set with a soundboard feed from the band’s engineer Justin Ripley, with a mild amount of audience microphones from my Schoeps supercardiods thrown in. The house mix was highly compressed, as evidence on the recording, but the sound is overall quite good. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3] | [FLAC]
Note: This MP3 link has been fixed

Stream the complete set: 

Deer Tick (performing as Deervo for Devo’s “Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!”
Brooklyn Bowl
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Justin Ripley) + Schoeps MK41 (directly right of SBD, PAS)>KC5>CMC6>Sound Devices USBPre2 >> Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter, imaging)>Audacity 2.0.3 (fades, tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Set 1: performing as “Deervo” on Devo’s “Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!”
Set Time [38:02]
01 Uncontrollable Urge
02 (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction [feat. The Districts]
03 Praying Hands
04 Space Junk
05 Mongoloid
06 Jocko Homo
07 Too Much Paranoias
08 Gut Feeling (Slap Your Mammy)
09 Come Back Jonee
10 Sloppy (I Saw My Baby Gettin’)
11 Shrivel Up

Set 2 [Set Time 53:36]
12 Easy
13 Born At Zero
14 The Curtain
15 The Dream’s In the Ditch
16 I Got A Rocket In My Pocket [NRBQ]
17 Twenty Miles
18 Something to Brag About
19 [banter1]
20 She’s Not Spanish
21 In Our Time [w/ Vanessa Carlton]
22 [banter2]
23 Mr. Sticks
24 [banter3]
25 Ashamed
26 White Freightliner Blues [Townes Van Zandt]
27 La Bamba [Ritchie Valens]

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Deer Tick, visit their website, and buy their records in their online store.

Ultimate Painting: October 25, 2014 Rough Trade – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

January 6, 2015

[photos by acidjack]

The UK band Ultimate Painting made a stealth infiltration of several year-end lists for 2014, despite a general lack of hype here in the U.S. We had an opportunity to catch them during CMJ at the showcase at Rough Trade for Chicago stalwart Trouble In Mind Records, and what we saw made us hope many more stateside appearances are in the future.

Led by their eponymous track, “Ultimate Painting”, the show began with one of the band’s best songs and went on to prove the quality of their songwriting and playing throughout. It shouldn’t be a complete surprise that the band members know what they’re doing; James Hoare was in the band Veronica Falls, and Jack Cooper hails from Mazes. The band’s most common name checks are Television and the Velvet Underground, which might be true, if either of those bands can simply be shorthand for well-written, ear-bending guitar rock in the best and most timeless sense. For those who oozed over fellow British breakouts Temples, Ultimate Painting may satisfy similar cravings, minus the sense of trying quite as hard.

The band’s record didn’t reach us until October, right around the time of this show, so you could be forgiven for losing it amidst the holiday season glut. Now’s the time to earn your penance and check it out. We’ll have this one on repeat well into 2015.

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Ultimate Painting
Trouble In Mind CMJ Showcase
Rough Trade NYC
Brooklyn, NY USA

Hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Cam) + Schoeps MK41 (DFC, PAS, at SBD)>KCY>Z-PFA>Sound Devices USBPre2>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (exciter effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

01 Ultimate Painting
02 Rolling In the Deep End
03 Riverside
04 Three Piers
05 Central Park Blues
06 Jane
07 Winter In Your Heart
08 Ten Street

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Ultimate Painting, visit their website, and buy their debut album from Trouble In Mind Records.

Medeski Scofield Martin & Wood: December 11, 2014 Terminal 5 – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

December 28, 2014


It had been a whopping fifteen years since I last saw Medeski, Martin & Wood (at the Ritz in Raleigh, NC, during the Combustication days, if anyone’s counting), so I was grateful to get another bite at that apple on one of my final shows of the year. The addition of the guitarist John Scofield, the band’s longtime collaborator, made this show at Terminal 5 a special treat.

MMW always straddled the line between being a serious jazz unit and serving up the more funky, R&B and blues-driven music that endeared them to the jam band scene, which has always orbited around the band even though they’re not really a perfect fit for it. With Scofield in the lineup, the band becomes a bit more of a “rock” band, and that made Scofield an especially worthy addition in this cavernous room.

To that end, the first set of the performance worked better for me, kicking off with a few minutes of improv before delving into “Sham Time”, the leadoff track from the foursome’s 2014 album Juice, followed by perhaps the moment of the show, “Juicy Lucy”, featuring Martin’s mother Jean and Jerry Paris dancing together onstage. From there we got an older MSMW tune, “Chank”, followed by two more from Juice. 

The second set fell into the trap that I think befalls too many otherwise-talented bands followed by the “jam band” faithful — the curse of the Rock Canon. I find it unfortunate when a musician of any stripe can’t bring themselves to churn out something more inventive than covers of the best-loved songs of the sixties and seventies, but it’s especially unfortunate coming from what is ostensibly a jazz outfit. Each of “The Times They Are A-Changin'”, “Sunshine of Your Love” and The Doors’ heinous “Light My Fire” can be found on Juice, and none did much credit to these musicians on that album or in the room on this night. While the quartet found some new solo-worthy material to mine in each song, the fact remains that these three well-worn hits are better suited to a jukebox, rather than half of a live set by a band that’s still making quality new material.

That quibble aside, I’m excited to have seen MSMW for the first time, and to have (finally) caught MMW again after so long of a break.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK41 supercardiod microphones right at the soundboard, into the Aerco custom preamp for extra warmth and realism. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Medeski Scofield Martin & Wood
Terminal 5
New York, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acid jack

Schoeps MK41 (at SBD, DFC, PAS)>KC5>CMC6>Aerco MP-2>Sony PCM-D50>24bit/48kHz WAV>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter, imaging)>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (light dynamics)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Thanks to aaronji for the setlist/tracking assistance

Set One [Time 52:06]
01 [improv]
02 Sham Time
03 Juicy Lucy
04 Chank
05 North London
06 Helium
07 [banter]

Set Two [Time: 1:02:14]
08 Louis the Shoplifter
09 Little Walter Rides Again
10 Sunshine of Your Love
11 I Know You
12 Light My Fire
13 [banter2/encore break]
14 The Times They Are A-Changin’

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT MMW, visit their website, and buy Juice from the band.

Angel Olsen: December 9, 2014 Bowery Ballroom – FLAC/MP3/Full Set Streaming

December 23, 2014

[photo by acidjack]

Angel Olsen ended up on a lot of year-end lists this year for several reasons, but the instrument you’ll notice most is her voice. Olsen has one of those aching, slightly sharp tones to her throat that doesn’t let your attention slip, refuses to fade into background music. This show at Bowery Ballroom was the second of a two-night stand for Olsen at the venue, and her final show of the year. In keeping with that, she let loose, drinking tequila onstage and playing both some cool covers (Waylon Jennings’ “Rainy Day Woman”) and some of her oldest songs (“Tiniest Lights”). She played that latter song, and several others, to a room rapt and whisper-quiet, alone on her guitar. The rock-ier songs, especially those from the lauded Burn Your Fire for No Witness, may have carried the day with the crowd, but it was these quiet numbers that gave the clearer window into who Olsen is and just how affecting her work can be. It wouldn’t be wrong to call Olsen one of the breakout acts of 2014, and she more than deserves the title. I hope she has a wonderful 2015.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK5 cardiod microphones from our usual location in the venue. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete set: 

Angel Olsen
Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Schoeps MK5c (PAS, slightly LOC)>KC5>CMC6>Sound Devices USBPre2>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (compression, adjust levels)>Izotope Ozone 5 (stereo image, exciter)>Audacity 2.0.5 (fades, tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC (level 8)

Tracks [Total Time 1:22:50]
01 Hi-Five
02 Free
03 Drunk and With Dreams
04 Stars
05 Lights Out
06 [banter1]
07 Acrobat
08 High & Wild
09 Tiniest Seed
10 When You Walk In the Room [The Searchers]
11 Sweet Dreams
12 [banter2]
13 Forgiven/Forgotten
14 [banter3]
15 Windows
16 Tiniest Lights
17 [banter4]
18 White Fire
19 [encore break]
20 Rainy Day Woman [Waylon Jennings]
21 May As Well

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Angel Olsen, visit her website, and buy Burn Your Fire For No Witness there.

Yellow Ostrich: December 8, 2014 Glasslands – FLAC/MP3/Streaming FINAL SHOW!!

December 15, 2014

[photos courtesy of David Andrako for BrooklynVegan]

“How do you start when you know it’s gonna end?” Alex Schaaf asks on Yellow Ostrich‘s “How Do You Do It?”. The same could be asked of anyone starting a rock band these days. Or for that matter, a music venue. Yellow Ostrich came onto the scene full of promise, and throughout their five years, they mostly lived up to it, as their popularity soared and the density and complexity of their songs followed. Like a lot of bands these days, this one began as Schaaf’s bedroom project, only growing into a formidable live act after the fact. The first time I saw Yellow Ostrich perform, at Mercury Lounge in 2011, Schaaf was fighting with his vocal loops on “Whale”, putting on a hell of a performance despite the glitch on his first song. Back then, the band had other dates happening at places like Shea Stadium and Piano’s. A year later, they were playing Bowery Ballroom, a confident full band at the top of their game.

But isn’t it painful, in the end, to put forth so much effort, to pour so much of your soul into something, when you know that in all likelihood, a half-decade worth of a run is all you’ll get if you’re lucky? Making music requires so much giving of yourself, it’s hard sometimes to imagine how it can be worth it. You give and give and give, and at best you get a few syncs, a few streams, and hopefully a full house some nights. When things end, chances are that memories will be short. If you matter, in the long run, to a handful of people, you’re lucky.

But if Schaaf and his band felt any melancholy about Yellow Ostrich’s passing, they didn’t show it. It felt right for the band to close things out on the stage at Glasslands, which itself will be no more as of the end of this year. The band will end on a high note, the more confident Cosmos, which pushed their limits while retaining the essential tunefulness of the melodies and intensely personal bent of Schaaf’s words. Tonight the band was on from start to finish, Schaaf bounding across the stage as songs took on added flourishes of guitar and a little something extra in the vocals. This isn’t the same band that started it all, when Jon Natchez joined up to make it a fully-realized creature, but it’s a very good one, equally loyal to Cosmos tunes like “Terrors” and “Things Are Fallin'” as to old greats from The Mistress like “Whale” and the set’s closer, a searing, extra-long “Mary”. While the whole set is streaming below, I wanted to emphasize “Whale”, which has grown so much from that first version I saw played at Mercury. To me this first song on The Mistress is the essential Yellow Ostrich song, and in the three evolving versions I’ve recorded, you capture the band’s story in miniature. The song has always been catchy, but only this time, the entire crowd sang along.

Those of us who spent much if any time in the music scene just across the East River have found much to mourn this season, saying goodbye not only to institutions like Glasslands and DBA but to longtime bands and friends as well. While a moment has ended, this can only be looked at as torch passed. New York has never been the place for those who don’t like change; change is the essential part of its character as a city in almost every way. For his part, Schaaf isn’t going anywhere — he’s already got a new project, Human Heat, with an EP to its credit. I grinned as the band played The Mistress’ “Hate Me Soon”. The truth is, Yellow Ostrich didn’t stick around long enough to give us a chance to. And most times, that’s just the right way to go.

I recorded this set with our installed Glasslands system, Naiant X-R cardiod microphones and a soundboard feed by the band’s FOH Keith Milgaten. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream “Whale”

Stream the complete show

Yellow Ostrich
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Keith Milgaten) + Naiant X-R>Roland R-26>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (compression, alignment, mixdown, fades)>Izotope Ozone 5 (light EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (tracking, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 1:08:35]
01 Fog
02 Shades
03 Hold On
04 [banter1]
05 Neon Fists
06 How Do You Do It
07 Elephant King
08 My Moons
09 Whale
10 Ghost
11 Any Wonder
12 [banter2]
13 Things Are Fallin’
14 Marathon Runner
15 [banter3]
16 Hate Me Soon
17 Mary

If you enjoyed this recording, please support Yellow Ostrich, visit their website, and buy their records from their online store.


Big Ups: November 2, 2014 Mercury Lounge – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

December 12, 2014

[photo by Danny Krug for Canvas Media PR]

For budding music nerds, discovering the Touch & Go catalog is an eye-opening experience. I have to imagine Big Ups enjoyed a similarly formative exploration of that catalog. They pair the post-hardcore sound of bands like The Jesus Lizard and Shellac with strikingly direct lyrics that narrate the indignities of everyday life. Joe Galarraga’s frenetic vocals are tempered by the tightly wound trio of Brendan Finn, Amar Lal, and Carlos Salguero. As a unit, the band mines the tenuous territory that lies between frenzy and control, managing to teeter on the edge of chaos without retreating to the comfort of complacency—no small feat when you take a look around.

And so despite the Sunday evening opening slot, Big Ups wasted no time in challenging the crowd to shake off any post-Daylight Saving grogginess with an intense thirty-minute set at Mercury Lounge comprised of selections off their debut album Eighteen Hours of Static, the two tracks from their upcoming Exploding in Sound split 7”, and a handful of new songs. Set-opener “Justice” is a wakeup call in which Galarraga wails with conviction, “Everybody says it’s getting better all the time, but it’s bad, still bad.” It’s a convincing argument with the songs that follow as its supporting evidence. Yet the songs refuse to give in or give up, convinced that it should and can get better. While not a dramatic stylistic departure from the earlier material, the duo “Rash” and “Not Today” (both out now on a split 7” with Washer) represents their most realized songs yet. If these two tracks are any indication of Big Ups’ future direction, there may be hope after all.

I recorded this set from our usual location in the venue, with a soundboard feed from the Mercury Lounge FOH, Dave Lefcort. The sound is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show: 

Note: All of the material on this site is offered with artist permission, free to fans, at our expense. The only thing we ask is that you download the material directly from this site, rather than re-posting the direct links or the files on other sites without our permission. Please respect our request.

Big Ups
November 2, 2014
Mercury Lounge
New York, NY

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by Eric PH

Audio Technica 3031 + Soundboard (engineer: Dave Lefcort) > Roland R-26 > 2x24bit/48kHz WAV > Audacity 2.0.5 (set fades, mixdown, EQ, tracking, tagging) > FLAC (level 8)

01. Justice
02. Hope For Someone
03. Meet Where We Are
04. T.M.I.
05. Rash
06. Not Today
07. Yawp
08. [Unknown]
09. Wool

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Big Ups, visit their websitelike them on Facebook and buy Eighteen Hours of Static there.

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