Avi Buffalo/ July 6, 2009
July 6, 2009
Avi and I met up on a fairly overcast Monday afternoon in early July, the kind of day where the marine layer just sits with a certain stillness. I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect when I showed up, whether it would be the full band, or just Avi acoustic (all the music and words are his, but it isn’t your typical singer-songwriter fare). What I got wasn’t really either.
It was at his parents’ house, nestled somewhere in a quiet and invisible patch of suburban Long Beach. Maybe more unassuming than the home itself was Avi; shaved head, all smiles, wearing a bright blue long sleeve UCLA shirt and torn black jeans. He said he’d thought he might play a few songs with his electric through an amp, and maybe do one acoustic song. I have to admit I was a bit incredulous at how this would work with just him, but that was proven wrong the moment he started. Avi’s music has a sort of magnetism to it that keeps pulling you further in. The careful imagery, delivery and intricate musicianship that, even with just his guitar and voice, is layered with such depth that it begs for further listening.
Sidebar: Of course the first thing anyone tends to mention when talking about Avi Buffalo is their age. I was completely oblivious of this (that he had literally just graduated high school a week or so before), even when I showed up at his parents’ house and he played in the room he grew up in; after all, I know plenty of musicians who moved back in with their parent’s even after graduating college. It wasn’t until I went to their show two nights later at the Viper Room, and none of the band members were allowed inside the club except during their set. Needless to say, the music feels ahead of their years (when I was his age I was listening to Bad Religion and playing four-chord pop-punk). One can only imagine the music he’ll be writing a few years from now.
There was an indistinguishable logic to the arrangement of the furniture in his bedroom; that is, it had all the recognizable elements of a typical bedroom (a bed, dresser, desk, cabinets), just laid out without any real order – the dresser in the middle of the room, cabinets opening sideways into a bureau. I guess not too unlike an Avi Buffalo song; pop sensibility, but with an unexpected and beautiful disorder. We cleared a corner of the room and he played four songs that day. Resonating through each is that eager, almost anxious cheeriness; a true love and excitement for what he’s doing. It’s infectious.
Find out more about Avi Buffalo at www.myspace.com/avibuffalo
Camera: Elliot Glass & Allen Kelley
Sound: Elliot Glass
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