Seratones – live at Mercury Lounge, NYC

Seratones Live at Mercury Lounge, NYC

Seratones blew in on a southern breeze to NYC’s Mercury Lounge. Let’s let the singer, AJ Haynes, introduce, just as she did from the stage on Houston Street: “From Shreveport, Louisiana – you can blame us for all the slush and shit.” There’s definitely a warm weather vibe from the foursome, including Connor Davis on guitar, Adam Davis on bass, and Jesse Gabriel on drums. The audience was ready to heat up and by the third song, Necromancer, which is the single and video, Seratones have brought a straight flush of honky tonk, whisky and hip shaking music to banish the cold grey winter world. Their sound – one part southern rock, one part blues, a dash of Janis, a spoonful of Amy Winehouse, and a few shakes of that homemade bitter you just can’t find anywhere else. The bassist is solid, keeping the train rolling. Nothing flashy, just that stuff that makes you jump on the bar with no idea how in hell you got up there. Adam has got RIP Lemmy in tape on underside of the bass. Connor throws out some fine guitar lines, and Jesse hits the drums like he’s still fighting off any demons they might have met during the filming of the video. Together, they mix up a hard edged backing that might be too a little too strong for some vocalists. But not this one. Haynes is an admirable front woman, playing guitar, coaxing and cajoling the crowd, with a strong set of pipes that doesn’t falter through the entire show. All attitude and a little bit of sass. She introduces a song, saying it’s about when you want someone to come over, and they do but after – “they’ve got to go away”. AJ Haynes is the one calling the shots here. For the last couple of songs, AJ puts down the guitar and steps off the small stage, dancing through the room, and she seems freed from all restriction. She draws attention like branch water from a well, and you’d be mad not to wonder if there’s a solo spotlight somewhere with her name on it. They were great last fall at CMJ, making it no surprise that eyes are on them. With the tour and some TV appearances lined up, Seratones are a band to watch. And going home, when the announcer on the train says “this is a KIngs Highway bound F local train”, it feels like one of their songs, and you’re heading somewhere back in the bayou, with a beat. Rack ‘em up again.

Review by Alice Severin

link to Northern Transmissions review of Seratones live

Seratones live on CBS March 4

Day Wave live review at Mercury Lounge, NYC

Day Wave
Mercury Lounge, NYC
August 19

Day Wave, the new alt-emo-surf-pop band, the project of Jackson Phillips, played last night at Mercury Lounge. Promoting the new EP, Headcase, the five member live stage band dove right into the set.

Starting out with the single, “Nothing At All”, the sweet vocals contrasting with the world weary ennui of the lyrics “What am I good for/Somebody tell me/I don’t know anymore”, the band was crisp and energetic right from the start, a sharp snare sound keeping things tight. The crowd was right there with them. The second song, “Total Zombie” elicited a howl of pleasure of a pair of girls in front, possibly delighted with Phillips’ doe eyed, chiseled features and stage presence, a mix of earnest watchfulness and introspective stillness that matched the bittersweet beach party reflections of the lyrics.

The music is carefully put together, fashioning a surf-infused depression that you can dance to. The summery appeal of the songs was not lost on the sold-out crowd. After a few songs, Jackson Phillips said hello and announced that it was their first show in New York. The audience weren’t shy about shouting out their approval.

Day Wave knows the appeal of a hooky chorus and a heart-tugging middle section that allows even more emo verve to surge through. By the time they reached the last song, “We Try But We Don’t Fit In”, a serious anthem of summer energy, the relaxed ease with which Day Wave aced their New York debut left the audience convinced they had been in the right place to be last night.

Day Wave is playing a late show at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn, tonight, August 20. Go catch the wave.

Day Wave on Northern Transmissions