Friday, April 14, 2006

When the night tucks you in...

Last night I saw Robbers On High Street at Mercury Lounge. This was completely unexpected, but up until that point, I had spent my night watching my friend Stephanie's uberly drunk roommate attempt to walk in a straight line. As much fun as I was having watching the aforementioned roommate sidewind down Houston Street, I was much more interested in hearing new songs by the boys from Robbers On High Street.

I saw Robbers On High Street last summer, but the room seemed more crowded last night. A packed Mercury Lounge made me smile because I think the band writes some solid songs and put on a tight show. Frontman Ben Trokan was as lovely as ever singing in that wistful reminiscing way of his. There's something about the sweet rawness of his voice that reminds me of Elvis Costello. There was also a new keyboardist who I had never seen before. The fifth member is a nice addition because it allows Trokan to remain up front instead of switching between keys and guitars.

In addition to my favorites, the band played a lot of new songs for an enthusiastic audience. The new material had fantastic beats and melodies, and felt jammier than older songs. By "jammier" I am not trying imply "hippie bad." Grant it, it was my first time hearing the new stuff; however, the new songs felt longer and broke the mold of some of the songs on Tree City. The also showed off the versatillity of each band member, and for the first time, I think bassist Jeremy Phillips really stood out to me. His bass lines were simply amazing and they captured my attention right away.

Robbers On High Street closed their set with a new song that featured a saxophone solo by Trokan that only a mother could love. After the show, I asked Trokan the name of the song, but I was too tired by that point to remember anything he said. Instant memory loss is my sign to go home, so I put myself in a cab and called it a night. Needless to say, I will have to buy the new Robbers On High Street album when it comes out because I really want to know the name of that song.
Here are some mp3s from Robbers On High Street's set from's Lounge Act performance:
Robbers on High Street: Spanish Teeth
Robbers on High Street: Opal Ann
Robbers on High Street: The Price & Style
Robbers on High Street: Love Underground
Robbers on High Street: Menger Institute


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