Tag Archives: indie rock

#67 TAIX on 9-28-11

TAIX is a French restaurant in Silverlake. We were invited by Lost Marauders to play this show. They are a bit of a ‘hard rock’ trio. Sadly Francis was deathly ill, so he stayed sleeping in the car until the last possible minute. It was a mostly female audience, but could have been more well-attended. It reminded me that there are 10,000 places for a band to play in Los Angeles, and some are better than others. The show went off well, but an inter-personal freak out by one of the women at the show left a bad taste in our mouths.

#62 Tokyo Garden on 5-29-11

Andrew Bunnell of The Sunburns, the one picture we got of the show.
This was the last show of the tour, and it was a perfect end. Tokyo Garden is a Japanese Restaurant/music venue in downtown Fresno. 
We had postered a week prior on our way up, and had set the show up with some good local bands, so this show was nicely well attended, and the bands seemed to work well together musically. Brother Luke and the Comrades opened, and were a pleasant surprise. The singer reminded me a bit of David Bazan
Our set was better that the SF show, and I put a sock on the mic to keep from being electrocuted. The audience seemed very open and friendly, and I felt that we were well received. 
Next up were the Sunburns, fronted by Andrew Bunnell who I had coincidentally met on the set of a game show about 4 years ago! This was a bit of an ‘idea realized’ since when we met and became chummy I had always intended to play a show with him. They had it together, and played loud songs with just enough catchiness. 
Closing the show was I Do Not Exist, who are a newer band. The singer/guitarist has a ‘what the Hell?’ bluesy groan, poised oddly in a low-fi indie band complete with MicroKorg and percussionists. This was their 3rd show, but they delivered.
So good. Great end to this run. Quite pleased.

#56 Mr. T’s Bowl on 5-20-11

photo by Tami Bahat
What a show! This was extremely successful, shockingly in our home town. The event was put on by Mishito Presents who did an incredible job putting it together. Tonight we played with bands that really worked well with us musically, which hasn’t been the case for a LONG time.
I was asked to play from an old associate who knew me from early Briggs days. His band is the Oddfaces, and the singer is the head of Mishito Presents. She had a great voice, and danced for almost all of the other bands.
The dreamy soundscapes of Family Tree Analog opened the show, and also playing were the Violet Shades and The Knots. The Knots were kind enough to switch slots with us so we could be not dead when we played.
We had a great time, and even brought out Michael’s spinning club light, a rare treat.

#54 Doll Hut on 5-17-11

This was the first show of our tour. Doll Hut used to be Linda’s Doll Hut and is a bit legendary, particularly for punk rock bands. I’m trying to think if this is the first time we’ve actually played Orange County.
This is a small place with access to the stage from front and side, so you could have a very nice packed ‘surround sound’ audience. We did not unfortunately, as there were no local bands put on the bill. (LA, LA and SF) The men’s bathroom had a toilet seat hanging from the wall instead of on the toilet, which was amusing.
Tonight we played with Bell Ringer, who are 3 members of the defunct Cola Cola. They are nice people, and we actually get to play 3 tour shows with them. We also played with Speedgoat, who are a bluesy/metallish power trio from SF. They had a giant stuffed bear ‘mascot’ (not a goat) who sat in front of the stage during their set. 
The performance was a decent start to this tour.

The Active Set, ON TOUR.

Yes, we have booked a very nice tour up and down California. It originally had Portland as its northernmost destination, but Portland proved very difficult to book a show in. Over saturation of indie rock is our guess, so we’ll have to visit another time. The tour (appropriately christened the “It Multiplies Tour”) will include the following dates:

May 17 – Anaheim – Doll Hut
May 18 – San Diego – Ruby Room
May 20 – Los Angeles – Mr. T’s Bowl
May 21 – Visalia – Cellar Door
May 22 – Santa Cruz – Metavinyl
May 23 – San Francisco – Brick & Mortar Music
May 24 – Sacramento – Naked Lounge
May 25 – Redding – Maxwell’s
May 26 – Eureka – Little Red Lion
May 28 – San Francisco – Brainwash Cafe
May 29 – Fresno – Tokyo Garden
 
We have some special surprises planned, so those interested in seeing a ‘different side’ of the Active Set should definitely come out to some of the shows.

#53 The Airliner on 3-5-2011

(photo by Amber McCandless)

We had this show planned for quite a while, and were happy to be playing the nicer stage upstairs. When we arrived, we discovered that there was live music happening on both stages, and therefore 413 different bands were playing that night. (That is an exaggeration.)

We lugged our gear up the staircase and set it to the side. The band was about to play. I wandered outside to greet some of the people who came to see us. The band played for what seemed like over an hour, and I was antsy to play. We started to move our gear to the stage and a gentleman siad, “Oh, we’re on next. That first band was supposed to be on at 8.” It was now around 10.
This was unfortunate, as some people who came to see us couldn’t stay. However, we had a good time with those who did, and the next band were very polite and even offered to cut their set short. I declined. We finally hit the stage and as we played, the front row came alive. A core group of audience members seemed to hang on every note, and cheered us on continually. They kept asking question and shouting nice supportive things. It felt incredible. 
One of them swore they weren’t intoxicated, and I saw x’s on the hands of another so it may have been the truth. Our eager ‘merch girl’ made the rounds and collected more e-mail addresses we’ve ever got at a show. The audience was so receptive, it made me feel like I was in a different city. Fantastic.
Someone who watched the set said, “You guys are too good to be playing the Airliner.” 
Fair enough.