Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Show preview: Sleigh Bells at Metro, 10/27

Posted by Andrew

No need to go into any backstory on this band. Assumedly, if you are reading this blog you read at least one other music blog. Since within the past year, and I am not exaggerating, literally every single music blog has had a piece on Sleigh Bells, you are probably already familiar with their incredibly rapid rise to indie fame. And with a rise that rapid comes the inevitable “is it deserved?” Personally, I think Sleigh Bells are great. Treats is one of my favorites of the year. It manages to capitalize on the raw sound of the demos with an added intensity. It is perfect in the sense that it is perfect for right now. It is the sound of 2010. It avoids '60s pop and folk sentimentalism or '90s indie throwback. It’s got drum machines, but lacks any '80s sensibility. The amount of compression leaves no doubt that I am suffering permanent hearing damage listening to them. But live? Well, it’s all just reproduced by similar speakers that you can listen to at home. So what’s the appeal? Essentially, it comes down to the "I was there" bragging rights. These guys easily could have played the Metro or possibly the Riv at a decent, all-ages hour. Instead they opt for a midnight show in the middle of the week. Brilliant.

A persistent theme for Sleigh Bells is a commitment to and respect for transience. Eleven tracks in 32 minutes for their debut LP. That output is begot by guitarist Derek Miller’s attitude toward song writing. In an interview with the Chicago Tribune this week: “I kind of disown everything I do. When I'm recording it, I'm totally committed and really excited, like, ‘Wow, this is great!’ Then I turn on it immediately.” Write, record, and move on. Caleb Followill be damned. Sleigh Bells could very well be the band that puts out two albums and disappears. For my time, I’ll take two fantastic albums over a box-set of shit (I said looking straight into Caleb’s eyes). Miller teases us: he and vocalist Alexis Krauss have already started working on more material, but are too busy touring to record anytime soon. In town this week, hopefully we’ll get a sneak peak of things to come.

Take Thursday morning off like I am and come out for a late, late Wednesday night show at Metro. Pictureplane open and tickets are still available.

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