NOISE POP NIGHT 5 :: 03/03/07
Words & Images by: Kayceman
Clinic, Earlimart, Sea Wolf, The Mumlers
Saturday night of Noise Pop would once again feature a strong four-band bill of pop-laced rock at The Independent. After San Jose's The Mumlers, L.A.'s Sea Wolf quickly grabbed the crowd's attention.
The Independent :: San Francisco, CA
Featuring the acoustic guitar and introspective vocals of Alex Brown Church, Sea Wolf was surprisingly good. With seven people on stage - including violin and viola - the band worked a delicate, potent blend of mellow rock. Throughout their impressive opening spot, it was impossible to not think about Margot and The Nuclear So & So's. From the large ensemble packed with strings, plucked guitars and especially that voice, Sea Wolf is clearly tapping the same well as Margot, but the results are no less gratifying.
Sea Wolf :: 03.03.07 :: Noise Pop
Also from L.A., Earlimart work the pop-rock model but in far more melodic and deeper way than Sea Wolf. Having seen the quintet not long before in the same room, the elevated level of performance during Noise Pop was remarkable. The hushed vocals of Aaron Espinoza over crashing walls of guitar at times brought to mind Silversun Pickups without the screaming. After a driving, jazz-tinged keyboard composition, Espinoza looked out over the crowd and explained how great the band felt, that they were trying some new things and loving it. From the reaction of the Noise Pop crowd it seems clear Earlimart is onto something. Should they continue to develop at this rate there's no reason they can't be headlining Noise Pop in the future.
Clinic in the intimate setting of The Independent was one of Noise Pop's most highly anticipated shows. Having sold out long before Saturday night, San Francisco welcomed the UK dance-freakers with open arms.
Clinic :: 03.03.07 :: Noise Pop
They took the stage dressed in their trademark surgical masks, top hats and matching brown hospital garb as some sort of demented whisper creeped through the speakers. Wasting little time, Clinic dropped right in with bombastic bass and drums. Most of the songs were short and punchy with a heavy 60's psychedelic overtone. Often driven by simple bass lines and swirling keyboards, they stirred up a dark acid surf meets The Doors vibe. Contemporary American rock band The Black Angels also came to mind, but overall, Clinic is on their own trip. The frequent appearance of the melodica and constantly searing guitars filled out the sound and kept the kids dancing. With the huge success of their latest release, Visitations and live shows at this level, it's no mystery why Clinic is a current favorite on the circuit.
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