AN HORSE and TELEKINESIS at the Pike Room

MONDAY JUNE 8, 2009
doors at 8PM
tickets: $8 (buy tickets)

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AN HORSE: Brisbane, Australia's An Horse recall the heyday of girl-fronted indie-guitar-rock bands that all to briefly flourished with Hole at the forefront. Cooper’s songs are sturdy, ringing and consistently tuneful, recalling many of the era’s shining lights without aping anyone’s particular quirks: hear Belly’s dense melodic atmosphere without any of Tanya Donnely’s fragile eccentricity, Liz Phair’s instinctive way around an elemental pop hook without her trademark wry deadpan, Veruca Salt’s knack for crafting super-sized choruses (to which the bounding, inexorable “Warm Hands” is the heir apparent) without Nina and Louise’s arena-rock snarl. Resolutely, and mercifully, song-focused, An Horse give us the best of both worlds by virtue of being the rare modern pop band that recognizes that gloss is not the same thing as refinement, and the rare indie-guitar band that understands that one-note minimalism an automatic stamp of true artistry. Fresh off of a hopefully profile-boosting tour with the equally deft Tegan and Sara, An Horse have proven themselves to be apromising band well worth watching.

With TELEKINESIS is Michael Benjamin Lerner (drums, guitar & vocals) with Chris Staples (guitar), David Broecker (electric, acoustic & bass guitar), and Jonie Broecker (bass guitar & keyboards) joining him on tour. They all live in Seattle, WA. Telekinesis! (MRG344) was produced, engineered, and mixed by Chris Walla (Death Cab for Cutie, The Decemberists, Tegan & Sara). Walla and Lerner tracked and mixed each of its songs to analog tape in a single day before moving on to the next song, with the ambitious goal of never over-thinking or sabotaging the spontaneous enthusiasm of the music. As Death Cab for Cutie's Chris Walla says, "On record, Michael Lerner is the sole member of Telekinesis, more or less. He writes, sings and plays the songs. His love of Japan knows no bounds, though he's never been. He's a fantastic drummer and a fearless singer. And he does not look back willingly. I mean, you can forcibly crane his head around in a pinch (mortal danger and Seinfeld reruns qualify). But Michael's songs are ridiculously immediate, and he delivers them with blinding velocity. His approach to music isn't unlike those spikes at the rental car place: Backing up deflates the tires, and not in a pleasant way. It's reflected in Michael's writing, too, this philosophy of ever- forward motion. These are big-hearted songs, written quickly and from the gut. Telekinesis is the geography of dreams; a school year abroad; love letters from Liverpool coffee shops to the Carolina coastline and Tokyo and everywhere in between everywhere; a road trip waiting to happen. And it's absolutely perfect, but not because anyone went back to fix it. It just happened that way."

COTTON LILLY opens.

 

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