On Saturday night I caught White Denim at the Bowery Ballroom and, as expected, I was blown away with their live show. Holy shit, do I love this band!
White Denim’s latest release – D – has quickly become one of my favorite albums of 2011, so it was great to hear the album live nearly in its entirety along with some deep-cuts from the bands full catalog. They opened with a similar non-stop song attack to this live segment I posted last week. But, believe it or not, they played it with even more energy.
Frontman James Petralli is a monster, not only taking on vocal duties with a grit and growl, but deftly handling rhythmic riffs and trading leads with their new second guitarist, Austin Jenkins. The rhythm section — with Joshua Block on drums and Steve Terebecki on bass — provides a kind of jet-engine propulsion for the band to bowl over the crowd. They’re almost like a modern day version Moon & Entwhistle, but dare I say, even tighter on the execution. I wouldn’t necessarily call White Denim a jamband, but they are definitely “jammy” in all the best ways, often unleashing a stream of guitar and bass riffs, but doing so in concise 4- to 5-minute passages. While there were some much-needed quieter moments showcasing the band’s ability to go mellow, most of their hour and a half set was a non-stop dual-guitar assault.
If a great show can be measured in how one physically feels after the encore, then this one gave most of the Bowery crowd some serious whiplash. I think I’m just now removing the neck-brace.
Check out the full gallery below or view a full-page slideshow over on flickr (Mazes — pictured in the 1st few shots — opened the show).