Last Tuesday night was the first-ever New York City show of one of our new faves around here at LIVE HQ: Khruangbin. Our friend Leo Goral was in attendance and brought back some thoughts on how their music translated to the stage as well as some quick cell phone shots from the evening. Read on… —Editor
Khruangbin debuted their captivating psych-rock live show in Brooklyn last Tuesday night to an energized capacity crowd. Held at Rough Trade NYC, the half-venue/half-record store was a very unique and remarkable setting for the extended grooves laid down by the trio. The energy in the crowd was certainly a fuel for the band, as they were visibly taken aback by their warm reception. It’s not too shabby getting to sell out a venue your first time in a new city, much less New York City.
Complemented by a mesmerizing live visual display of liquid paints through a filtered projector by Drippy Eye Projections, the backdrop mirrored the flowing and organic, yet refreshingly minimal music. They had an overhead projector set up on a balcony and were dropping paint onto slides throughout the show. Never seen anything like it. Also there were two large ferns on stage, which was nice.
But it was guitarist Mark Speer who really stole the show, driving each song with his hypnotic, reverb filled guitar presence. Bassist Laura Lee’s neon orange pants were particularly impressive as well. The band played extensively from their album, The Universe Smiles Upon You, embellishing nearly every tune with a tastefully improvised, arpeggio-heavy yet spacey and patient guitar solo. The steady drum and bass riffs pulled in the reigns and kept the songs mainly within their well-composed structures. This group dynamic strengthened the grooves on stage, and kept feet tapping and heads bopping throughout the entire set.
Though it was their debut in New York City, the raucous reception they received should warrant many return visits.
And finally, the vegan tacos served at the show by local hot sauce purveyors (and avid Bernie Sanders supporters) Tango Chile Sauce were as tasty as Mark Speer’s guitar solos.
All in all a great night! Can’t wait to see these guys again with some more shows under their belt.