Last Wednesday night, I got to see one of my favorite artists of all time perform for the first time in many many years. Cinjun Tate, formerly of the band Remy Zero (one of my favorite bands of all time that broke up in 2003 and the last time I saw them perform was in 2002) played a show at Union Hall, and I have to say I got a bit emotional - Remy Zero is one of the only bands whose music has actually made me cry, and I was heart broken when they broke up. The only problem that I had with the set was that it was so short - just 20 minutes. I think he played about 5 songs - 4 of his new songs and 1 Remy Zero song ("Fair" - which nearly made me cry because it's such a gorgeous, sad song and because I was so happy to be hearing it live again). It was such a pleasure to again hear his unique, emotive voice that has that rare ability to convey so much feeling through the tone and timber that it almost doesn't matter what the lyrics are. And the intimate space of Union Hall was quite a lovely setting for the show.
I spoke to Cinjun after the show for a bit. Apparently, he is a recent transplant to Brooklyn from LA (he also said he is loving it here!) and so I hope to see a lot more of him around the city. He also said that Remy Zero will be doing some performing together in honor of their former drummer of Remy Zero, Gregory Slay, who died this past New Year's day, after a long battle with cystic fibrosis. That was incredibly bittersweet news for me as I am elated to hear that Remy Zero will be playing together again, but it is a very sad reason for them to do so.
After Cinjun Tate were the High Highs. I'm going to be kind of brutally honest here. They were better than I expected them to be based on the music on their myspace, and I think they have a lot of potential, but I think they still have a long way to go. Their music is good - a few of the songs are even great. But their lead vocalist was inconsistent (he was very good on a few songs and horrible on some others) and their backup vocalist is terrible. If they can tune up their vocals and amp up their stage presence a bit, I think we could see great things from this band. Normally I don't post reviews when I don't love a band, but I really do think they have a great deal of potential, so I thought they were worth posting about.
Photos by Ryan Ong (more here).