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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Concert Review: Grand Archives at the University of Nebraska Lincoln, 1 May 2008

Since when do good bands come to Lincoln, Nebraska! I have lived here for 4 years, and so far have seen only a handful wander through - never to return! OK, enough exclamation points. On Thursday night, David Bazan and Grand Archives came and played a free concert on UNL campus. Bazan was good, but the room was ill-suited acoustically for his set. Furthermore, I am more familiar with his early Pedro the Lion days, and didn't recognize many of the songs. This said, he was sporting a nice sports jacket.

Grand Archives took the stage around 9:15 and played a great set. Here is the set list:

  1. Miniature Birds
  2. Orange
  3. Index Moon
  4. Swan Matches
  5. George Kaminski
  6. A Setting Sun
  7. Sleepdriving
  8. Southern Glass Home
  9. Torn Blue Foam Couch
  10. Crime Window
Once they got the band EQ'd and balanced correctly a few songs into the set, they cruised through them and sounded really good. 3 guitars all jamming at once, 4 of the 5 band members singing harmonies. The music was very layered. And, when, in Torn Blue Foam Couch, the LP features some great horn parts, the band substituted by yelling "Ba Ba Ba Da Da." Great touch! Another highlight was their version of Southern Glass Home - a great track which didn't make it onto the LP. In the middle, they transitioned into a cover of the Bee Gee's "I started a joke," then the Zombie's "Care of Cell 44," and then a 3rd cover which I didn't know. Very funny. Great harmonies. Some of my friends who came, but were unfamiliar with the band compared their vocal harmonies to Simon and Garfunkel or the Beach Boys. I think the band should take that as a compliment.

I have high hopes for this band. Their self-titled LP has a lot of high points, but also a few mediocre points. I hope that their upcoming Southern Glass Home EP (which according to the band on Thursday, was going to feature the title track plus a few new ones), and subsequent sophomore LP effort takes off where those high-points direct.

Below are some videos I took at the show. We recently got a new camera, and I wanted to test it out. The lighting and acoustics weren't the best, but the videos turned out fairly well.

forgive my amateur cameraman-ship (I know, thats not a word)

Miniature Birds

Index Moon

Swan Matches

George Kaminski

A Setting Sun


Torn Blue Foam Couch

Crime Window

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