Concert Review: Beat Connection with White Arrows, The Drake July 8

Sunday is the day you want to sleep off that hangover, relax and get ready for the long horrific week at work. Instead I manned up, put on my dancin’ shoes and hit The Drake Hotel for Beat Connection with White Arrows and Teen Daze. We unfortunately missed Teen Daze, sorry dudes, your recordings are pretty great and I wanted to see what you brought to your live set.

We did manage to catch White Arrows though, which was a pleasant surprise. It’s always great when you catch a band you’ve never heard of and then suddenly they make your playlist. White Arrows are based out of Los Angeles and have quite an interesting back story to them. Guitarist and vocalist Mickey Church was born blind, describing the world  as an “impressionistic smear,”  until he worked very hard with medical professionals to regain his sight at 11 years old. In a world where all your senses are heightened, music can become like magic and there began his creation of this magic. I read a review of their album in The Guardian, where the reviewer stated his disappointment with the album due to Church’s past, he had been expecting something that would sound heightened and out of this world. To this I have to say, yes, they can sound like a cross between The Strokes, and MGMT with their own little twist, yes it is not fantastical, over the top or incredibly unique. But in this decade, nothing is ever original, and with the internet as a DIY self marketing tool, anyone can be a band, book their own show, grab some electronics and call themselves a band. White Arrows were incredibly strong and tight as a band, each song started in a completely different manner, where you didn’t know what to expect. Also the world of art and music is subjective, one persons magic is not another persons.

Beat Connection have seriously upped their game since their debut Surf Noir EP, back in 2010. Previously seeing them on KEXP live, they were just a duo, manning the synth, electronics and sometimes throwing in guitar. Now they’ve expanded into a four piece, drummer, guitarist and vocals (mighty fine vocals might I add), and then beefed up, more confident sounding synth and electronics. Definitely a band that has grown and found their place in this vast music world. Their new vocalist looks like a guy you would find hanging out busking in Vancouver, or Seattle (where they’re from), singing some good ol’ fashioned blues. Funny enough he’s lending his vocals to an electronic “surf pop” type band, which in theory does not “compute”, but actually works very well. His voice is flawless actually, he didn’t miss a beat, and as they moved further into their set, the crowd picked up their feet a little more, and a little more until almost every hungover brain in there was dancing to the mood altering infectious sounds.

For the encore, Beat Connection brought Teen Daze and White Arrows on stage to do an amazing  cover of the Talking Heads “This Must Be The Place” , and yes that night, it was the place.

Posted on by lauren in Concerts

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