Daniel Hart @ Trunk Space| 8/14/12
Perhaps the New Times staff ought to add a new review classification-- something along the lines of "You Shoulda Seen It." Unfortunately, Daniel Hart's performance last night at the Trunk Space would fall into that category.
Considering this is Hart's third solid appearance at the Trunk Space in recent history, one would think he would have built a solid following. The St. Vincent backing alum made an obvious imprint on indie darling Annie Clark's proclivity for epic string arrangements. His inventive plucking and bowing the strings of his violin, along with the clever use of about 40 different pedals, is reminiscent of Final Fantasy's Owen Pallet.
If that's not enough to bring the "I saw him before he was big" crowd out at least once, I don't know what is. I can't begin to count how many times I've heard people tell me about the Grimes show at the Rhythm Room when I mention I am excited about the upcoming Crescent Ballroom gig, but we all know hipsters go gaga over being the first. So what's the hold up?
Did I mention Daniel Hart also played in the band Other Lives on their last tour--with Radiohead? Yeah, he's good. Although Clark and Pallet comparisons abound, Hart's brand of artsy indie rock includes funky electro rhythms and a pleasant overabundance of percussion--he has two drummers, after all. The combination of all of the elements of Hart's rich ensemble was the perfect theatrical accompaniment to the summer monsoon storm, complete with show-stopping thunder.
Not only was Hart worth at least the six buck cover, openers Hi Ho Silver Oh of Los Angeles were entertaining enough to rouse the few in the building to a round of hand claps and sing-alongs. Hey hipsters--their Fleet Foxes style vocal harmonies should've suckered you in like a 12-yea- old at a Biebs concert. Their angsty, distortion-heavy breakdowns should've put you in a tizzy of instant fandom.
Sure, it was a Tuesday night. Sure, it was hot out. Sure, it was raining later. But maybe there's a reason touring bands don't play in Phoenix on the weekend if they can help it. Maybe they realize they can actually make enough at the door in other cities to cover gas money and a post-show burrito.
As I did with Boom Chick, I have dutifully recorded a few songs from Daniel Hart's set. Please excuse my shaky toddy hands--damn you, Cartel.
Critic's Notebook The Crowd: A depressing five people total that weren't members of other bands, though they were a very passionate and supportive five people.
20% of the Crowd Told Me: She was surprised and embarrassed that more people didn't show up for Daniel Hart.
I realize that I am the biggest sucker for: Boys harmonizing with each other. I blame Brian Wilson for my captivation with Hi Ho Silver Oh.
My five-year-old suggestion: Tempeans--don't fear the Phoenix. It's a short drive, bike or (now) light rail away. Just do it. We're all one here.
My one-day-old threat: I'm going to keep whining about low attendance until it picks up, so go to a show in a small venue!
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