A Musical Adventure in Bushwick


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Last night I instigated an adventure. It was supposed to take us to  171 Lombardy in Greenpoint to see one of my favorite bands, Bishop Allen, open for Yummy Fur, of whom I really know next to nothing. At any rate, yesterday afternoon I get an email informing me of a venue change… to the Market Hotel in Bushwick. Slightly different.

So the evening turned into an opportunity to adventure on the JMZ, a string of lines that I largely view as being among the scariest in New York. We got on at Delancey and immediately picked out suspect looking people (i.e. kids most likely heading to our common destination). We got off the train, descending from the elevated track at Myrtle and followed a guy with purple gym shoes across the intersection. Three blatant NYU students huddled at the foot of the stairs saw us cross and followed behind, eventually clambering up the metal and duct tape stairs just inside an unmarked door at 1142 Myrtle Ave. The check-in girl slashed our wrists with a sharpie and taped neon green bracelets over the mark.

The Market Hotel is clearly one of those places that may or may not be a fully legal venue, and definitely didn’t originate as such. One of those lofty spaces with fake walls, a folding table with cases of beer behind it and a one foot high stage at the back corner, backstage concealed with a sheet. Perfection. And if you prefer to bring your own? Or to smoke your poison? All the better. All. The. Better.

I always forget how much I love seeing/hearing live music, especially in small venues where you can basically put your beverage down on the edge of the stage. Something about being able to feel the sound reverberate through your rib cage is sheer awesomeness. I know, I know… I’m serious and you can either deal with it or stop reading.

At any rate, like I said above, I dragged my friends to Bushwick to see Bishop Allen play and while one of them got too tired and had to go home and another was too sick to make it out in the first place… it was a fairly fantastic night. The band played a good mix of old and new selections and  had a trumpet section come on up for “Like Castanets.” In case ANYONE cares, other songs that I recall from the set list included: The Ancient Commonsense of Things, The Monitor, Empire City, Quarter to Three, Rooftop Brawl… the rest is a little fuzzy possibly Rain was in there too? I’m not qualified for this kind of thing. Sorry.

Highlight of my life was being in the second row of people in front of the stage (low point of my life, a really tall old man was standing in front of me and I am short). Second highlight of my life, besides my general joy, was how happy the band looked. They all just seemed really excited to be there and like they were having an awesome time, especially Christian Rudder, who appeared to be having the most fun. Me too. Meeeee tooooooo. And I appreciate enthusiasm, particularity, as I am so often lacking in it.

Ok, I can be done now. You missed out. You should have come. You’re jealous.

As a post script, if finding a herpes-free bathroom hadn’t become a necessity, I would have totally stayed through Yummy Fur’s set, which was enjoyable and worth looking into… but bathrooms and getting back to Manhattan become important at a certain point I suppose. On the way out, I fully crashed into Justin Rice of Bishop Allen and felt bad that I was peacing, not like he’s that concerned, I’m sure.

LAST postscript… we missed the JMZ by moments (my metrocard ran out and screwed us over) and so the journey home became yet another MTA transit adventure. Molly almost lost her voice lamenting over our luck (also earlier she had wanted to convey to SOMEONE that she hated the indie film they starred in… see my “Malaise” entry). But it’s ok, because we went to Munchies on the way home, which was delicious. Made it all better.

Gooooodnight.

Sorry, but P.P.P.S. I have issues documenting events in that it makes me uncomfortable, but here’s a link to a blog that has no such issues.

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Filed under Adventures, Musicking, Out & About

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