Reptar, Quiet Hooves, Zhora The Prophet Bar Friday, February 24
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"We are about to get nasty," said Graham Ulicny moments before "Sebastian," a standout from Reptar's self-titled album. The Athens, Georgia group didn't disappoint. Combining the nerdy dance vibe of early Talking Heads with the more modern sensibilities of The Walkmen, Reptar rarely struck a bum note the entire evening.
Sadly, the same could not be said for supporting act Quiet Hooves, another product of Athens. For every interesting groove came a drove of sidebars. Whether it was tossing wigs or simply having too many players (nine!) for the small stage, Quiet Hooves had all the subtlety of a thunderstorm. Good ideas were trampled by overwrought arrangements and needless shifts.
Much better was Dallas' own Zhora, a peculiar yet powerful trio fronted by former Ishi singer Taylor Rea, whose pipes were backed by some inventive sampling and top-notch drumming. Overall, the effect of Zhora is like a pleasant wine buzz. Word is a debut full-length is in the works to follow up an EP from last month, and such an effort could be one of the most anticipated local releases of the year.
By the way: Between bands, I made my way into the Prophet Bar's big room and was pleasantly surprised by the punk-pop of Here Lies the City, a young bunch of guys from Flower Mound. Held together by the solid songwriting of Kevin Easley, Here Lies the City could well be on its way to bigger and better things.