live music.

Last night, I went to see the Freelance Whales at the Mercury Lounge.

I only caught two of the opening bands.  One of which I never learned the name of, and the other which was probably the worst band I’ve ever seen.  Ever.  I couldn’t believe they were allowed to play on a stage, but I’m sure that is part of the appeal to some.  Their name was Animal Tropical and they looked (and somewhat sounded) like they were trying to be Vampire Weekend.  They failed.  Horribly.  They were dressed like preppy hipster douche-bags do, trying to look ironic or cool or dorky or what-have-you.  And their sound was, as I tweeted: “post-ska meets Napoleon Dynamite trying to be Vampire Weekend but too drunk to really succeed.  And the lead singer was a total asshole.

Anyway, onto Freelance Whales! They were so wonderful.  It’s refreshing to see people who are truly talented playing all the instruments.  Literally, 4 out of 5 band members played every instrument on stage, which spanned outside of the normal guitar-bass-drum set combo.  There was a mandolin, a banjo, a xylophone, tambourines, shit… even a gardening can!  Their music and melodies are just charming.  I’d recommend my favorite song, “Generator ^ 2nd Floor” as well as the other Generator one, which is posted on this great review on Stereogum.


4 Responses

  1. Animal Tropical Review:

    For a while there, especially around the summer of 2008, you couldn’t go to PS14 — or any of those usual Miami local-oriented events — without running into the Down Home Southernaires.Their name never made sense, but what did click was their sort of Talking Heads-esque absorption of world beat and indie rock, way before Vampire Weekend did it, and with a much more swampy feel. It was rock enough for the hipsters but crossed genres enough for the fringes of the Latin-fusion types.

    Then, DHS suddenly disappeared… But wait! They resurfaced recently, with what appears to be exactly the same lineup, and a similar approach to sound. The new name is Animal Tropical, and as that group they released an EP in 2009 called Doom Years that shouldn’t have been so slept on. You can download the whole thing for free over here at the Sweat Records blog.

  2. Animal Tropical don’t get enough credit. Love that band and have for a long time.

  3. I don’t know what Animal Tropical did to you, but from the tone of your review, I really hope they beat you up. That was an unjustifiable word raping on your end, even if they did suck.

    Douchebag isn’t hyphenated by the way.

  4. You are just all sorts of retarded.

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