Big Bloom closed out a show at the Ché Café Thursday night after sets by San Diego’s Spooky Cigarette and Brooklyn’s Haybaby. This was the second time I have caught Big Bloom and I still can’t figure out what kind of band they are. They seem to be pushing and pulling themselves in different directions – from song to song and even within a song. It is fascinating to hear different genres and influences come to the surface and then morph into something else. Classic rock, surf, psych, metal and garage all take turns to create interesting songs and a dynamic performance, all with singer Katie Howard’s impassioned vocals laid over the top. With such a big and varied sound I’d really love to catch this band on a bigger stage and with a much better sound system then the Ché Café has to offer. But really – catch this group if you can – on any sized stage!
I went to the Che Cafe tonight (for the first time) to see local favorites Big Bloom but was also impressed with the performance of Brooklyn band Haybaby. This guitar/vox, bass and drums trio would be hard to put into any one genre. Really, they seemed like a noisy/poppy/indie rock band that is willing to go anywhere the song takes them. The rhythm section of Sam Yieldon bass and Jeremy Duval on drums was locked into a groove on most songs, allowing the singer/guitarist, Leslie Hong, free reign to just go apeshit over and around whatever they were laying down.
Haybaby, who are apparently quite busy in the Brooklyn club scene, have been on tour for a while now, including a stop at SXSW – though according to Yield, they had to miss some shows due to flooding along the way. He also said that though the band has toured before, this was their first trek to the West Coast and from one venue to another they’re never sure what they’ll find or how many fans they’ll play for. He did say that Haybaby gives the audience everything they’ve got whether it’s 100 fans or just 7 people checking them out. I’d like to see this band again, but next time with better lighting and sound than the Che offers.
San Diego’s Spooky Cigarette opened for Brooklyn band Haybaby at the Ché Café last night. This band shows an obvious love of late 70′s/early 80′s post-punk/no-wave, combining distorted and often discordant keys, melodic guitar and bass, staccato drumming and almost atonal (and also distorted) vocals in a sound that is a real throw-back to the art-rock of those earlier times. It would really surprise me if these guys weren’t really into Joy Division and early New Order and it’s fun to watch and listen to younger bands mine those influences. And while the mostly awful sound system found at the Che was not doing them any favors, Spooky Cigarette still put on a great show and I hope to have a chance to catch them again soon.