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Corners' Residency At The Echo W/ Levitation Room And Mr. Elevator & The Brain Hotel, Monday July 21st 2014

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Corners’ third residency installment at the Echo was more psychedelic than the previous ones, with first openers Levitation Room, a quartet bringing a sort of Tame Impala vision and a strong 70s psychedelia vibe. There also was a bit of British invasion’s style, may be in the way they were holding themselves,… the Kinks crossed my mind a few seconds during their set. I had seen their names here and there but had never got the chance to see them, but it was just a question of time until this would happen. They are part of the Lolipop Records family — at least they were playing the Lolipalooza pre-party — and they were producing a cool retro-surf sound making them good candidates to open for the Mystic Braves or Allah-Las some day (may be they already did). Frontman Julian Porte’s vocals were floating or tiptoeing above a bright music wrapped by some hazy atmosphere, sometimes awaken by a more distinct surf guitar line, a powerful bass and some vocal harmonies. Announced as an ode to smoking marijuana, they had a song about weed to go with the druggy vibe, and it sounded like a natural product of their narcotic music.

Next, was Mr. Elevator & the Brain Hotel, a colorful and strange moniker for a very loud and noise making quartet, who had brought a large keyboard on stage. These guys seemed to have brought psychedelia to a glorious summit, culminating into some keyboard-driven crazy stomping numbers of fuzzy sound, throbbing wha-wha-screaming organ, light tambourine and fragile vocals, sometimes turning into a devilish gospel-chaos. They sounded like the Doors’ Ray Manzarek’s (with also a bit of Ray Charles) seen through a Pink Floydien kaleidoscope and covering the Velvet Underground… difficult to miss that part as their album is entitled ‘Nico & Her Psychedelic Subconscious’ (out on Burger Records) with many references to the Velvet. Their set looked and sounded like something off the late 60s, dominated by organ songs pushed to the extreme, with an ear-crashing sound and a level of distortion that put the audience in a sort of trance. It was chaotic and they elevated their sound to a sort of storm, making the crowd move and mosh and they didn’t even have a guitar…

I spotted a few people who were already at Corners’ first week residency, and even talked to two of them,… this wasn’t a surprise, I was certain people would come back to experience Corners’ awesome sound. This time, I didn’t dropped my camera, but the Echo was as crowded and as rowdy as ever, and the band played with the same toughness, the same determination, although their songs still remain a bit mysterious as they still haven’t posted more than one video on their YouTube channel. For the third time, a sort of frenzy captivated the crowd, and there are not a lot of close-to-unknown bands which can bring the same people (me included) several weeks in a row to listen to the same songs! Corners has real teeth, what else can I say, they are able to mix surf rock and new wave with a punk attitude and a creepy vibe, they bring a sort of nervous, ecstatic, euphoric, empowering vibe and they do it with class and style.

One more time, I could not stay for the last band, Jeffertiti’s Nile – which I already had seen at Lolipalooza – but, with their psychedelic doo-wop, they probably brought more weirdness to a night already full of surprising sounds… many of these bands are gonna play Echo Park Rising mid August… so there is more fun to come.

More pictures of the show here.


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