Show Review: Big Muff Radio, Stolen Jars, Honduras and Lazyeyes
Baby’s All Right
January 11, 2015
With JOVM being a (mostly) one-man operation, it often means that i’m spending a great deal of attempting to catch up on several different things with not enough hours in my day. Such is the life of a busy music blogger, right?
Back in January, I was at Baby’s All Right to catch Big Muff Radio, Stolen Jars, Honduras, who I’ve actually caught at one very disappointing and frustrating show at the Bowery Ballroom, and Lazyeyes, who were celebrating the release of their latest EP, New Year. And I have to admit that it was a frustrating night on a number of levels. First, I took the Q59 bus to the South Williamsburg-based Baby’s All Right and thanks to an incredibly crowded bus that seemed to stop every three or four stops and an incredible amount of traffic, I wound up missing most of opener, Big Muff Radio’s set. However, based on what I saw I didn’t really miss much as Big Muff Radio’s sound attempted to mesh the aesthetic and sound of Big Audio Dynamite and others but not in a very original or very compelling fashion. As a quartet they had the typical arrangement of a guitarist, bassist, a guy with a synth and a Macbook and a vocalist. I’ve probably seen a similar set up at least 50 times and always with a similar sound – always.
Once the beats actually started, the guy with the electronics was made unnecessary and he looked ridiculous bopping up and down – perhaps because he didn’t quite know what else to do. I also saw the band’s lead singer jump off the stage three or four times into the sparse crowd. And at one point, he accidentally yanked his microphone cord out during the middle of a song’s verse. He briefly panicked, replaced the cord and kept going. But that was the first time I had ever seen that before and it seemed ridiculous and laughable.
A huge crowd of people appeared out of nowhere for Stolen Jars and were excited to catch their electro folk sound and I couldn’t quite understand why. But i quickly surmised that they had to be friends and family of the band. The three vocalists may have sounded passable separately but together, they displayed a terrible sense of harmony – at a couple of points I winced in discomfort. And adding to my frustration was the fact that their songs were inert and lifeless at best.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve seen Honduras before at a disappointing and frustrating show at the Bowery Ballroom with the equally uninspiring Drowners. And in the year or two since I’ve seen them, I can’t say that I think they’ve actually improved; in fact, it’s much more of the same – a sound that cribs heavily from The Smiths, Foo Fighters and others in a highly unimaginative fashion. If you were unfamiliar with the music of 20 and 30 years ago, their sound may seem novel to you. And honestly, in the case of most contemporary music it seems that most people you encounter don’t know a whole lot about music; so if you were familiar with the bands Honduras was cribbing off off, it felt boring. Worse yet, many of the songs of their set felt way too long. It was a bit of a relief for their set to eventually end.
Headlining act Lazyeyes was playing to celebrate the release of their New Year EP and although I had liked the second song off the EP, “Adaptation” but somehow live I wasn’t super impressed, as they sounded like countless other indie rock bands around Brooklyn – in other words, a photocopy of a photocopy.
Check out some photos below.
Big Muff Radio
For these photos and more check out the Flickr set, here: