Saturday, July 11, 2009

Harlows: Favored Indie Venue

I saw Blitzen Trapper at Harlows on Thursday night. If you like 70s bluesy/country rock, this is a band for you. The show was straight-ahead from the first song to the last, with nary a hiccup in between, just a pack of guys that really enjoy working together and who really know how to play their instruments. The three most charismatic members--Eric the pint-sized keyboard/guitar/harmonica-playing lead singer (evocative of Bob Dylan, obviously), Erik the curly redheaded and bearded bespectacled rhythm guitarist and singer, and Brian, who plays the drums, sings, and sports a serious 70s beard--are enthusiastic front men who really made the show a joy to experience. It doesn't hurt that they fucking rawk, either:



I often lament that Sacramento gets so few indie bands of medium stature. Once they are big enough to play a venue like the Memorial Auditorium (like Death Cab for Cutie-which are no longer indie anyway, I suppose), the fun of seeing them is somewhat diminished for me. Even so, I am grateful for the bands that decide to grace us with their presence, and so much the better if they choose Harlows for that purpose. Harlows has great sound and is just the right size. After seeing a few shows there in recent years, I admit that the swirly multi-colored walls and the remodeled booths provide for better mobility and views throughout the venue. Now if only they would dump those lights that always seem to swivel around directing piercing beams into my eyes, all would be perfect.

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