I went out and about to several shows since Thursday and caught some cool acts, which I recommend for your consumption.
Lite Brite: A young Sacramento three-piece band that reminds me of what you might get if Sonic Youth met The latter-period Jam. But they don’t slavishly ape their influences; it’s more the occasional feel to the music here and there. They also pulled off a nice cover of Led Zeppelin‘s Ã¢â‚¬Å“In the Night,Ã¢â‚¬Â not an easy thing to do.
Kevin Seconds & The Altruistics: The latest rock project from Sacto’s resident punk rock legend. The music seems to me a mix of hardcore punk with melodic pop sensibilities. The band is tight, and, as always, Mr. Seconds has a very deft touch with songwriting.
The Knockoffs: Alas, this terrific band only gets together for reunion shows these days. In talking to singer Tom Hutchison before the show, he said they try to play one 21+ and one all-ages show each year. This was the all-ages event, held at Javalounge. Little rust was evident on the Knockoff music machine, and fans were seen actually moving their bodies to the music (not moshing though), a rarity at Sacramento shows.
Saucer: For some reason this band doesn’t draw the crowds they deserve, perhaps because of the sporadic gigging. The sound is what one might encounter from a mash-up of The Cure and The Pixies, two very cool bands in my book. They started out strong but were apparently put off by equipment problems. But those first 3-4 songs were glorious.
Radio Orangevale: If you like Las Pesadillas, you’ll probably like this band, especially seeing as how it contains three-fourths of LPs. But don’t expect a carbon copy of the previous band. This band is somewhat more straightforward in approach, with hints of Iron Maiden in the harmony guitar lines. Definitely one of the better Sacramento bands.
Baby Grand: Or, as I like to call them, The Baby Grand Orchestra. I was a fan of this band from back in their beginning days as a pop trio, but they now have something like 6 or 7 members. It’s hard to keep track. But the odd thing is that the more members they add, the softer and gentler becomes the music. This style actually fits songwriter and singer Gerri White’s tunes much better. Of course, the fact they were doing an in-store at R5 Records and had to play at a lower volume than normal added to this effect, but I’d still call it soft indie pop. Seeing as how I tend to gravitate toward louder and faster stuff, the fact I like this band is somewhat remarkable, but, I consider it more a sign of their quality music.
Do yourself a favor and check out any of these bands if what I wrote here even remotely sounds intriguing to you.