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Surprise Me Mr. Davis + the Low Anthem

Music seen at Space, August 8
By CHAD CHAMBERLAIN  |  August 13, 2008

August in Maine always threatens to become a quick non-sequitur into autumn. What better timing then, for SPACE to host Surprise Me Mr. Davis, a band whose bright and sunny pop can deviate toward a dark and foreboding sound of contemplation and lost love.

Though they’ve attracted little national attention to date, either the headliner or their opening act, Providence’s the Low Anthem, could be another band we’ll all be talking about in the next year. The Low Anthem is a trio who keep their performance within the bounds of somber low-fi. Employing a wide range of instruments — clarinet to banjo — their style spans everything from learnings of Brown Bird to a postmodern Neil Young.

Surprise Me Mr. Davis was not surprising if you expected a great time. All talented, and all good-looking, the band’s indie-rock tendencies are frequently interrupted by deconstructive ambience or dissonant harmonization. My favorite song, “I Hate Love,” could be an anthem for any Portlander. In our small city, who hasn’t hated love at one point in time?

Related: The week in boners, Screening sounds, Dead End Armory, More more >
  Topics: Live Reviews , Neil Young
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