Blonde Summer/ October 2, 2011
October 2, 2011
I met up with Chris (and Matt, who was there for a minute and played on one song) at his place in Silver Lake (which, it turns out is Orpheo from Edward Sharpe’s house that Chris happens to rent, and therefore has a pretty amazing rehearsal / studio space in the back.. that we didn’t end up using, but thought it was worth a mention). The South Bay native East Side transplants (familiar to yours truly, in fact by chance happened to live a block from my old place), had only just moved out a little more than a month before, yet somehow their place was immaculately moved-into. Despite being in the heart of Silver Lake, the place had a distinctly West Side bungalow feel, probably mostly due to the surf boards leaned against walls and polished mid century furniture. And there was pizza and beer (they’d recently been sent home each with a case of their choosing from a gig in Colorado as payment), so that’s always a plus.
Blonde Summer had just played the day before at the Eagle Rock Music Festival, and were gearing up for a trip to New York for CMJ, thankfully we were able to finally get together and do a session (we’d been talking about it since the beginning of the summer). I was (pleasantly) surprised when I heard they were going to do something completely stripped-down and acoustic (seems like these days bands are tending more and more to want to try a full band production around the videos, which was never really the intention of these sessions). For me anyway, it’s always more interesting when, especially a well-recorded / produced act, is willing to go a bit out of their comfort zone and do these sort of bare-bone renditions that leave the songs and songwriting to speak for itself. This session kind of reminds me of when Pheonix plays completely acoustic. These are upbeat, poppy, dance-y indie songs, reminiscent of someone like the Shout Out Louds, that you normally wouldn’t imagine in that singer-songwriter acoustic realm. Yet Mr. Pope completely owns it, and the songs completely hold up. Of course, it helps if you’ve got immediately catchy melodies and pitch-perfect singing.
Chris played four songs as the sun went down (quickly). You can actually see it getting darker through each number. Then we ate pizza and hung out.
Find Blonde Summer @ http://blondesummer.com/
Camera & Sound: Elliot Glass
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