On a Denton-filled night at Lowest Greenville's Cavern, the welcoming committee must've skipped town. The double-booked show forced three out-of-town bands to cut their sets to ridiculously short times, and equipment trouble was so bad that Erik Thompson, lead singer of headliner Lo-Fi Chorus, was continually shocked by his microphone. Other problems with the Cavern's sound system prompted his bandmates to leave the stage early in frustration--drummer Erik Issacmen kicked his drum set over and split--but Thompson kept the show rolling by stealing bassist Chad Walls' sock and using it to cover his electric mike. Lo-Fi's love for '80s Brit-pop stood out with catchy new songs "Record Player" and "Billions of People," while the crescendo at the end of the otherwise-mellow "Cannonball" breathed new life into an older tune.
Despite playing only five songs, fellow Dentonites Bridges and Blinking Lights used their short set time to present a fierce set of taut, bouncy indie-pop. "Halfway Home" delivered a head-bobbingly sweet bass line, and an untitled new song showcased the charmingly unhinged vocals of singer-guitarist Jake Wilganowski.
In what must have been a booking mix-up, Dave Matthews-esque Dallas band Tall interrupted the Denton showcase with a remarkable lack of substance and originality. They provided quite a letdown after the quirky piano ditties of opener and Denton man-about-town Paul Slavens. Every song he played was improvised and based on fake titles made up by the audience; my personal favorite was the first of three versions of "Your Mama Wears Lederhosen."
Lo-Fi Chorus, Bridges and Blinking Lights, Tall, Paul Slavens
Friday, June 24, at the Cavern
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Unfortunately, the music was overshadowed by a nasty incident after the concert--two thugs attacked me when I walked to my car on a nearby side street. Several bumps and one black eye (my girlfriend's!) later, I decided to write off shows on Lowest Greenville in the near future. Thankfully, there's always Denton.