Christina B., The Pendulum Swings, and Corn Mo at Bushwick Music Studios, March 19th, 2010
-reviewed by Marc Montfleury (aka Eloh) of Indie Band Guru
Walking up to Bushwick Music Studios @55 Waterbury St you really have no clue what to expect. You could most certainly walk right by the place thinking it is a warehouse. That my friend is the allure.
From the street I can hear what sounds like an accordion and someone choking on it. As I walk in the door I realize it is “We are the Champions” Being covered by a one man band with a drumstick taped to his right sneaker , an old crash cymbal next to that sneaker and the afore mentioned accordion in hand . It is a small space. If you could fit 30 people in there it could possibly be very uncomfortable.
Corn Mo’s voice (Yes that is the nomenclature he prefers) bounces off of the walls and hits you in the face like a sucker punch. It is a strange mix. Like something between 90’s grunge and circus music gone mad. Sadly I only caught the last two songs of his set. I should add that I was not sure if Corn Mo was serious or just having fun at first. Either way his performance got my attention. You can check out his music @ www.cornmo.com or www.myspace.com/cornmo.
Next up The Pendulum Swings (Jason Trachtenburg’s new project). Jason of course hailing from the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow players. An indie-vaudeville conceptual art-rock pop band conceived in Seattle and now based in New York. I had heard a few of their songs like “Eggs” and “Look at Me” So I was excited to see what this new incarnation would have to offer. Stepping to the stage with a keyboard, one microphone and a drummer the boys started the show on a great foot. Most of the songs were maybe two to three minute long forays into structure less abandon. Starting and ending abruptly, With lyrics ranging from alienation to subway groping to not wanting to tempt time.
Jason himself is very entertaining to watch. The class clown bleeding on the inside and so in tune and comfortable on stage. It was a short set maybe 35 minutes of music mixed with a few hilarious jokes to flesh it out. Also kudos to his drummer for keeping everything together with no bassist in the middle. I always admire minimalist bands like this that can transfer two instruments and a vocal into something tangible. You can check out his music @ www.slideshowplayers.com or www.myspace.com/slideshowplayers .
Last but not least Christina B. I actually ran into Christina outside as I was trying to convince the door man that I was on the guest list. She swooped in to save the day. She was also kind enough to answer a few of my random questions and buy me a beer.
I found out that the one thing she cannot live without is rice. Her favorite venue to play is Goodbye Blue Monday. She loves to vibe off of the audience to keep the energy flowing, that is unless they are not receptive, then she gets angry and bounces off of that anger to play even harder. Lastly she is not partial to Snickers or Mars bars.
The set started with a raucous drum beat programmed on her laptop, a few notes from the keyboard and the place broke out into dancing. This is something I have not seen in a long time. Grown men dancing and having a good time in a small club . The songs themselves came across very well and Christina was right to the point. No introductions. No banter between songs. Just straight up music. About twenty minutes in she decided it was a wrap and tried to get off stage, but was cheered into playing one or two more songs.
After all it was her EP release party. Again I was impressed by the minimalist approach of a keyboard, a drum beat and a vocal.
You can check out Christina’s music @ www.myspace.com/thechristinab or www.christinab.net where you can download both of her new EPs for free.