After just returning from the European leg of their “Twentytwo In Blue” tour, Sunflower Bean stopped by Bowery Ballroom on April 26th, for a hometown show to kick off their US tour. Their NYC shows are usually a raucous affair and Thursday night did not disappoint.
This time, the trio of Julia Cumming (vocals/bass), Nick Kivlen (vocals/guitar), and Jacob Farber were joined on stage by pretty much as many people as could be squeezed onto the stage at Bowery, including friends Danny Ayala on keyboard, Zöe Brecher on percussion, producer Matthew Molnar on bass, Jarvis Taveniere on guitar and Julia’s high school classmates Claire Jones and Marcela Avelina on backup vocals!! All in white, the band looked ecstatic to be back home as we were reminded several times by Julia and Nick that “New York is the best city in the world!!”
If you’ve never heard Sunflower Bean before their sophomore record “Twentytwo in Blue,” this show was perfect for you since they played the album beginning to end. Sunflower Bean has always been a band that you must see live to fully experience the music. While the record is brilliant from start to finish (you can read the Pancakes and Whiskey review of Twentytwo in Blue here, you can only hear the ferocity in Julia’s voice and the virtuosity in Nick’s guitar and experience the joyful energy of the crowd at a live show. The non-stop, hard hitting rock was only interrupted briefly by the beautiful ballad “Only a Moment.” After a brief break and a change of outfits, the band returned to the stage with, first, a cover of Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” followed by a few of their earlier songs.
It was a beautiful night to celebrate “Twentytwo in Blue” and to be reminded that these bandmates are really still that young. Every tour seems to build on the previous, getting better and better. The sky is the limit with Sunflower Bean and your hometown fans hope to follow along.
Article: Howard Shiau