Monday, April 10
Aslan/The Wuffs - Live in Bloomington Review
This was my first of many shows in the Bloomington area (I'll be at school there next fall), and I saw two local bands, both of which I'm good friends with. The venue was a coffee shop called TC Buzz, which was very well decorated and serves a mean Caramel Frappe.
First up was The Wuffs, a collaboration between two talented local artists, Jason Roberts and Jeff Alvarez. I've posted about Scenic Square before which is Jason's other band, and The Wuffs are the Ben Gibbard Solo to Scenic Square's proverbial Postal Service. Concerning their name, if I understand right (correct me if I'm wrong, Jason), it comes from the way children would (mis)pronounce "Wolves". Jason also said that the name was mimicking the current indie trend of somehow putting the word "Wolf" into every band name.
The band started out with Jason playing 3 acoustic songs before adding an organ as a drone. The acoustic guitar mixed with his whispering voice provided a very melancholy and organic sound, that kept the audience in hushed enjoyment. "When I Wake" was the highlight of this part of their set. Soon Jeff Alvarez took over the guitar and vocals while Jason began playing drums and/or organ. These songs were noticeably more upbeat and bit more catchy, but still were unarguably folk in nature. Fans of artists like Jose Gonzalez, Matt Pond, and Sufjan Stevens will most likely love The Wuff's sound; I'm putting three of my favorite songs up for you to download.
MP3 Break Of Dawn
<>MP3 When I Wake
Be their myspace friend!
The next act was Aslan, which is a four-piece band that also plays acoustic-driven folk music, but in this case, is peppered by harmonica and a steel guitar. They are led by Sean Deolanardi and Whitney Hatfield which share singing and songwriting duties. They began with the gorgeous song, Queen of Spades, which was a highlight of the evening for me. The song starts with a driving harmonica line and moves into a Conor Oberst-esque verse. The chorus has some great lyrics like, "I'd wipe that tear from your eye / but we both know that I can't reach that high".
Some other highlights of the set was "My Mistress At Sea" (I'm a sucker for harmonicas) and a couple of covers including Damien Rice's "Volcano". Whitney's voice added a lot to performance, contrasting Sean's scratchy vocals, and she performed a couple of songs that she had written which were very pretty. After the show, I asked Matt (the drummer) if the opening of Chronicles of Narnia had any effect on their band. He said that the only difference is people used to say "Aslan, what's that mean?" and now they say "Aslan, oh the lion". Anyway, here's a couple songs from Aslan that you'll enjoy if you like Bob Dylan, Bright Eyes, or Damien Rice.
MP3 Queen Of Spades
Visit them on myspace!
Leave some comments for the artists in the comments, if you like them! I'm sure they'd love to hear it. If anyone is interested in purchasing one of these albums or getting more music from one of the artists let me know and I'll make sure to get it to you.
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