Confession: I have a thing for two-piece bands. Sluts of Trust, Lightning Bolt, Two Gallants, The Black Keys, The White Stripes – I like the danger implicit in just two people on stage where every element of the music is so exposed. And now a new favorite rising through the ranks of two-pieces I Love: Death From Above 1979. Last night the Toronto-based duo brought their version of stipped down rock to the Bowery Ballroom. Rocking a bass, a synth, a set of drums, a porn ‘stache and some serious bangs, Jesse Keeler and Sebastien Grainger pummeled through tracks off their fantastically named Vice debut, You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine. Managing to bang the shit out of his drum set while singing, screaming and stomping around during bass fills Grainger dispels any doubts about the effectiveness of a drummer front man while Keeler manages to shake the floor with sounds I’ve never heard from a bass guitar before. Keeler is known for saying that the band’s goal is to “be like an Elephant in your living room." Excellent. Who do I need to talk with to orchestrate a tour of living rooms, toilets and rooftops with Death From Above 1979, The Coachwhips and Thee Snuff Project? I just don’t know if the world is ready for that much rock.
Confession: As much as I love a good rock out with the cock out, I still love some sweet indie rock. Dirty rock gets a little bit sexier when countered with The Legends, The Shins or, last night’s headliners, Metric. The ever-adorable Emily Haines lead the Toronto quartet through tracks from their critically lauded Enjoy debut, Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? Sometimes you just want to throw your head back, thrust your fingers into the air and dance like Snoopy, and during Metric’s set last night I actually saw some hipsters crack a smile. And I swear that when the band launched into the single “Combat Baby” I saw some dancing, and that takes some serious talent.