Thursday, August 13, 2009

Miracles of Modern Science @ Union Hall

Last night I trekked over to Union Hall to catch Brooklyn sci-fi string maestros Miracles of Modern Science. First up was Great Divide, a band that's currently spread all over the country but was started at University of Michigan. They started the night off right with some awesome high energy tunes that had everyone dancing. Their sound spanned funk, blues, and country rock, and sometimes was an interesting combination of all three. They looked like they were having a lot of fun on stage, which is what I like to see. I would say go check them out but sadly, the band being so geographically spread out right now, they won't be playing together much anytime soon (they have shows coming up in Baltimore and Chicago though, if any of you reading this happen to be living there). Here's an mp3 from their upcoming LP (release date tbd). photo credit:

Waiting [mp3]

Miracles of Modern Science was so much fun! I can't decide if I am disappointed or relieved that they weren't wearing the shiny costumes I see in all their pictures though... On the one hand, it might have been too gimmicky for me. On the other hand, I kind of wanted to see them in their full splendor so to speak. But it didn't really matter. The show was still wonderful, albeit it too short. They played all the songs from their EP, but my favorite was one that I hadn't heard before: a HILARIOUS, dark and bizarre number called "Didit" (check out a live recording of it on their myspace, although I have to say it doesn't really do it justice, but I'm not even going to try to describe it because it's just that bizarre). I have to say, they have a really perfect sense of musical comic timing. The whole audience was cracking up.

I spoke to lead singer Evan Younger after the show and asked him how they come up with this stuff and surprisingly he said the music comes first and the lyrics often come out of experimenting once the music is done. I guess in some ways that makes more sense than to sit down and say (for example) "I'm going to write a song about a guy who kills people by whistling" (that song would be "524" if you're wondering). It also makes sense because the thing I love about MOMS (besides their semi-unfortunate but fittingly random acronym) is that no matter how weird the song is, the music is still really good. Some bands who are weird lose themselves in that and think that's enough to get them by. But MOMS is not just weird for the sake of being weird. They kind remind me of a cross between Ra Ra Riot and Jukebox the Ghost - they are playful and sometimes even silly but they have this beautiful string-based music. Here's their new single:

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