Thursday, July 03, 2008

Sunny Day Sets Fire at Spaceland

The London based collective of Sunny Day Sets Fire descended upon Los Angeles for a batch of dates to promote their latest release Summer Palace on IAMSOUND records.

The Monolators

It has been awhile since I last checked in with The Monolators. I previously reviewed their show at the Echo when they had a release party for their EP You Look Good On The Train. Eli Chartkoff (Guitars/Vocals) led The Monolators through an infectious power pop/punk set. Eli had a baby blue Rickenbacker that magically mixed together with the spiky guitar lines from Tom Bogdon (Guitars) who was using a Harmony guitar. Ashley Jex (Bass) kicked off her shoes as she deftly navigated the fretboard of her Gibson Thunderbird bass. The Monolators were significantly faster and tighter compared to the last time I saw them. Eli would frequently go back to the drum set to check on Mary Chartkoff (Drums) as they were locked into the rhythm of their songs. The Monolators will be back at the Echo on July 16th with Pizza!, the Rolling Blackouts and The Growlers.

Sunny Days Sets Fire

Sunny Day Sets Fire played an impressive set from start to finish. Their brand of psychedelic sunny pop was perfectly recreated in a live setting. I can't remember the last time I saw a Guild 12 string acoustic guitar on stage as Mauro (Guitars/Vocals) added spools of texture to their songs with lush chords. "Teenager Talking" was a beam of sunshine from the band with Max (Guitars) pulling out rays of light on his Fender Telecaster. Onyee (Vocals/Synthesizers) was switching between her Nord Electro and Roland SH-201 and occasional sprinkles of xylophone. "Stranger" accelerated the pace and knocked me over with a hypnotic guitar solo and soaring vocal harmonies. Mauro demonstrated his broad vocal range with "Wilderness" as I was impressed how full the band sounded. The feel good vibe of "Hollywood" permeated the room as Spaceland seemed to transform into Sunny Day Sets Fire's playground. "Mandarins" was probably my favorite tune of the evening as some Spaceland patrons were actually dancing to the music. Onyee took center stage for a spastic romp of "Map Of The World". Things are looking sunny for Sunny Day Sets Fire. I suggest you catch some rays and pick up their album.

In Waves

A theme of sun soon changed to water as In Waves drenched the crowd with waves of reverb. This was the fourth time I have caught In Waves and they continue to impress me. Jimmy Strange (Vocals/Guitars) had his Schecter hollowbody back in action after previously using a Fender Mustang. Tim Gregorio (Bass) still firmly anchored their songs as Delano Duran (Drums) looked extremely comfortable behind his drum kit. A new release is tentatively due in summer so any day now I expect their full length album to come out. I also should mention I need to check out Jimmy's other project with the members of Foreign Born entitled Fool's Gold.

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