Monday, November 10, 2008

Live: Longwave

When: 11/9
Where: Sound Fix Lounge, Williamsburg

When I heard Longwave was doing an acoustic set at a cafe this weekend, I certainly raised an eyebrow. If you're not familiar with Longwave, you'll have to trust me that they are not an acoustic band. They are known for their wall-of-sound, effects-laden guitar music. Unplugged, I was curious what would even be left.

As it turns out, a lot. Acoustic sets by electric bands usually involve everyone strumming their acoustic guitars just like electric ones and hoping the audience can imagine what effects would kick in where. But unlike so many bands, Longwave took the time to write new arrangements for the show, transforming their songs into something completely new but equally beautiful. Replacing overdrive pedals with ukulele and a full drum-kit with shakers and a snare drum, the band's acoustic set-up allowed their songwriting to come to the fore.

All of the members showed great restraint in never overplaying, even when members had to sit out. The set was refreshingly short and while I would have loved more, it's nice to hear a band limit themselves to the songs that they know are good for the show. I left the concert impressed not only with this band's musical talent but also with their outstanding respect for their fans. If all musicians were as considerate as these, concert tickets would be worth their prices and the world would be a much kinder place.

[I should mention that this show was in support of Longwave's new album, officially released tomorrow. I'm going to try my best to get an album review up very soon, so stay tuned.]

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