Hockey @ The Bowery Ballroom, 3/15/10
There was a wide range of people who showed up at The Bowery Ballroom on March 15th. You had your large crop of the swingin’ New York indie in-crowd, a generous heap of dance/pop fans, and the odd mustachioed older gentlemen strewn throughout. The band that brought this bunch together was Hockey and frankly I have a hard time understanding why. Yeah they’re danceable and they can write a hook or two but their music is incredibly generic. They took the stage a little late dressed like The Smashing Pumpkins circa 1994 and the crowd gave them a loving response. Now I was tired and a little drunk but a really awesome band can always snap me out of it. Hockey’s set was just an uninteresting thumping drone to my ears. But while they may not do it for me, the crowd seemed to be having a real good time so at least they can keep their target audience happy. I will say that I was fascinated into attention when frontman Ben Grubin strapped on an acoustic guitar and a harmonica. The song didn’t exactly sound like Bob Dylan but I’ll admit it’s not something you see every day, especially from a dance music band.
The first opener was The Constellations and they were enjoyable enough. They had a very layered sound and their frontman knows how to put on a show. I don’t remember any of the songs though. I spent their whole set staring at their backup singers and that was entertainment enough for me. The real highlight was The Postelles. They stuck out both for their lack of synthesizers and their ability to write really good songs. Their cover of “Beat on the Brat” wasn’t entirely necessary but hey, we were on the Bowery and the New York crowd ate it up. I was perfectly satisfied with their excellent original songs like “White Night” and “Stella.” They’re catchy rock and roll is just my style and I hope they come back soon as headliners because they deserve it. As for Hockey; good luck, Godspeed, and all the best.