Saturday was a great day for an outdoor show; the rains stayed away and the day wasn’t too hot. The bands, though, were like a house afire.
Tigers and Monkeys started the set, with songs inspired by blues and Southern rock. T&M, a project of singer Shonali Bhowmik, is currently touring with Ted Leo, Saturday’s headliner.
Next up, Brooklyn-based Sea Ray, a sort of wispy-rock combo with shades of The Polyphonic Spree, Belle and Sebastian, and Brit-pop bands like Travis. Sea Ray, however, blows the Coldplay types away by not being whiny navel-gazers. Jen loves ’em for their prog-rock tinkering with chord progressions.
After Sea Ray came The Natural History, a pop-punk trio out of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Ordinarily, I’d suspect Upper East Side “punks” as poseurs, but Natural History has chops.
Finishing the afternoon: Ted Leo and the Pharmacists (or Ted Leo/Rx or Ted Leo and the Pillbox Hats or whatever he’s calling his band these days). Leo and his band played a tight set, of Clash- and Jam-influenced punk-pop.
Leo is a rock hero in New York, playing a legendary South Street Seaport show during the blackout last August. When the power failed, Leo convinced the barrista inside a nearby Starbucks truck to loan Leo his generators. Leo and band plugged in and treated the crowd to a latte-powered jam.
All four bands have MP3s officially available, as all good bands should, so dig ’em out and have a listen. Jen has pictures from the day, here.