Tuesday, December 16, 2008

we saw: School of Seven Bells

"Can't Not Seem To Remember My Dreams Lately"
(Photo by redhead canvas)
If you see a show and don't post about it, did you really see it? Well, that was the case with the phenomenal Ghostly showcase, which closed out CMJ at (le) Poisson Rouge roughly 2 months ago. It wasn't long after the Detroit powerhouse released School of Seven Bell's intoxicating Alpinisms, and pairing the synthetic dream-gazers with dapper, micro-popist Matthew Dear couldn't have been a better bill. In fact, it was the best show we saw at CMJ. By far.

School of Seven Bells returned to NYC for a small club show last night at the Mercury Lounge, which was dimly lit and smelled like a Nag Champa factory. The atmosphere was perfect for School of Seven Bells, who appropriately got together during a late-night bonding session on tour. Dreamy, narcotic bangers like "Half Asleep" were shrouded in dense layers of manipulated guitars and pre-programmed drums, while relentless strobe lights forced many to enjoy the show with eyes half open, or entirely shut. This was beneficial, as, for me, the only way to experience School of Seven Bells is to shut your eyes and shake your head, letting blasts of color hypnotize your psyche as waves of sound wash over your entranced body (and mind). The band ran through the majority of Alpinisms, including "My Cabal", "White Elephant Coat", "Chain" and "Iamundernodisguise" during their short, but mesmerizing set. One of our favorite debut's of 2008's, we only wish they'd join Matthew Dear and fellow Ghostly artist (and CMJ show alum) Michna late night for New Years at LPR (2am-8am). Too bad they'll be tearing up Tokyo.

School of Seven Bells "Chain" 11/11/08

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