NYC’s new wave/power pop trio New Myths headlined an epic night last Friday at Rough Trade records in Brooklyn with a hefty list of Brooklyn heavyweight bands. It also just so happened that the show corresponded with David Bowie’s birthday and the release of his last album Black Star, so the store threw a big party for the genius himself, especially poignant now that Mr. Bowie has passed. Thusly, there was a big in-store celebration in the middle of the sprawling shop that involved sweet Bowie prizes, cake decorated like his album cover, and a number of highly talented local musicians playing his songs. It brings me to chills now thinking of all those fine covers being performed with such glee now only a few days later as the Thin White Duke has gone from us for good on Monday.
Once the show started in the proper venue in the back of the complex, there was four full sets of pure magic to come. The rocking quartet Jangula kicked things off properly, with some loud guitar-riffing rock. Their lead singer Johnny Jewel sports not only a very thick mustache and smoky voice but also plays a unique instrument called a Q-Chord which is a touch-pad based synthesizer that sounds like everything from a harpsichord to a keytar and helps send their riffing classic rock hymns way into other dimensions of sound. Also, nice they played a killer version of David Bowie’s “Moonage Daydream.” One of my fav local musical outfits Veda Rays played second, and they have certainly come a long way since they were a raw duo of vocalist and guitarist Jim Stark and drummer Jason Gates just a few years back. They have since expanded out their lineup with bassist Richard Thomas and the haunting keys of Maria Joanna Bohemia and now their music now hits me as more of a more modern Echo and the Bunnymen rather than the later day than a later-day Velvet Underground they used to remind me of. Their smoother sound can be heard fully of their new album Gamma Rays Galaxy and is a real gas to get spaced out to.
The charging Brooklyn trio known as Haybaby is another one of my favorite local bands who have come a long, long way musically in the last few years. While at first their sludgy noise rock may fool you into thinking they are some sort of grungy garage rock outfit that’ll you may need to wear flannel for, rest assured, they will inevitably build into rumbling tremors of a shuffle that will blow into the skies like a volcano with epic apexes that can melt faces and pump fists equally. During the climaxes lead singer and guitarist Leslie Hong is a firebreathing screamer but can also woo with soft melodies and even pass off cheeky humor without missing a dark, hard-rocking beat. Go out and get their just-released album Sleepy Kids now and thou shalt not be disheartened!
New Myths blew in like a cool Summer breeze as the headliner, and although they have no new album to sport, they did play some new material, and generally seduced the audience with some quality Go-Go’s meets Dum Dum Girls sounds. They manage to bring on the rawness of a power-trio 90’s Muffs with the smoothness of a glammed-out 80’s Blondie. Lead singer and guitarist Britney Boras belts out a tune like a modern Kate Bush while drummer Rosie Slater and bassist Marina Ross together blend synths with fuzzy guitars to produce a darkly rocking and yet strangely danceable sound. It all turned out to be a bittersweet night in light of the rock world’s sad loss, but the best way to honor someone like David Bowie is always to party, dance, and sing just like you know he’d hope you would.
Article: Dean Keim