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  PARLOUR w/ Silver Sun Pickups and Gwendolyn  
  The Silverlake Lounge (AKA, The Fold)  
  Silverlake, Los Angeles, CA  
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A night out in Silverlake, home of the LA indie scene, to check out some up and coming bands in the area.

This club, which is tiny, has changed quite a bit since my last visit, including a darker interior and more concert posters on the wall. Most importantly, however, a new sound system, which improved the sound ten fold, in my opinion. Of course the word "SALVATION" is still predominantly displayed using low-wattage light bulbs mounted on metal strips at the back of the stage. The Silverlake Lounge is is about as laid back as you're going to get in this scene and in this town. The crowd was a good size and extremely respectful of the performers, which lends itself to a pleasant environment.

Gwendolyn was performing as I arrived, and I must say I was mildly impressed with the music. It seemed a bit pretentious at the start but as time wore on the music grew on me. Some unique instrumentation near the end of the set really stuck out sonically, and i was later told what it was: glasses and water (the Mr. Wizard remix?). The performance, while it did not set my hair ablaze, was interesting and I will make a point of checking them out at the next opportunity.

Silver Sun PickUps were on shortly and went through a set that was abnormally mellow yet still managed to keep an upbeat attitude. Imagine if The Afghan Whigs had signed to K Records initially instead of SubPop and you wiull get a good of idea of what they sounde like. Silver Sun Pickups have a very indie early Whigs sound, but in a much poppier style. A couple songs even had me bouncing (this being the highest rating for me) and indeed the other songs kept with the mellow mood on the night and kind of lumbered. This being my first time seeing them I was quite impressed and look forward to seeing a whole set soon. Keep a sharp eye out for a split 7" (with Pine Marten) on SeaLevel records soon. Due to hand painted covers there will only be 500 copies printed.

Parlour began and ended their set with the house and stage lights out and only the track-lighting mentioned earlier ("SALVATION") created a nice ethereal mood. The music utilizes gradual build-ups to create a peak that many people consider blissful. It can be quite brilliant; but after a while it actually becomes more ennui than anything. A couple of the numbers do present a brighter mood, or shall I say, a poppier feel. All in all a good performance, but if they wish to stay on their new label, Capitol, and not become a write-off they must become more likable. I guess we'll be waiting on the record and tour for a verdict.

A strange mix of styles at The Fold this night. By the end of it all I was exhausted. Seeing and listening to such gradual and beautiful music can really wear a person out with so many highs. In all honesty, it seems like there wasn't enough lows to really keep my attention. Dynamics is what I'm talking about here people: the songs seem good but no variation within a set makes me realize that something is lacking. Just shake me and wake me up every now and then, please!

The new sound system was great. I was nice to really hear the bands for once. All in all a nice cheap night out with some good up and coming bands. Keep an ear out!

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