Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pitstop: Alex G

There's something to be said for jumping into a music discovery situation almost blind. Two weekends ago, I found myself at Living Bread in Brooklyn for Orchid Tapes inaugural showcase. I ended up there essentially as a tag along with Cemeteries' Kyle Reigle who was in town visiting that weekend and for another opportunity to see newly minted ex-Canadian Foxes in Fiction again after discovering him at Portals/Stadiums & Shrines' incredible CMJ showcase at La Sala. My first hint at the sheer level of awesome music I would consume that night should've been in the fact that the Cemeteries frontman was willing to take a nearly 7 hour cross-state excursion to make it to the event. Despite the multitude of incredible bands that night (R.L. Kelly, Happy Trendy, the aforementioned Foxes in Fiction, Julia Brown, and Coma Cinema), one of my absolute favorites was Philadelphia's Alex G.

It might've been the fact that a mosh pit broke out almost immediately upon the impact of their first note but really, my enjoyment of their set was based on more than that. Featuring pretty laid back indie rock vibes (that functioned as a kind of weird dichotomy to the furious moshing that was occurring in front of the band), my first take away from the band was that they were essentially Pavement. An observation that reeks of shallow comparison, I'll admit. But in "Forever", I heard vestiges of "Gold Soundz" whether imagined or not. A far better comparison might be Why There Are Mountains era Cymbals Eat Guitars (who also share that seemingly unshakeable Pavement-esque classification) sans rugged experimental streak.

Need for comparisons aside (or the lack thereof), Alex G is pleasant, tuneful but certainly not vacant indie rock everyone can get behind. Written and recorded by the band's eponymous frontman, Alex G's music is angular slow-burning lo-fi jams that are never long enough to overstay their welcome, instead able to enjoy limitless replay value unless you have the self control required to break yourself away.

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