Southern Californian groove rockers The Shore brought a bit of the 213 to the 212 last evening as they rolled into NYC for the latest date on their US tour. Heading out in support of their self-titled debut record on Maverick, the quartet, who recently featured on the conveniently-named Fox vehicle North Shore, unleashed their psychedelic rock extravaganza on the brimming Mercury Lounge patrons, leaving no music lover behind.
Kicking off the set with “Different Ways,” the Ben Ashley-fronted outfit quickly settled into their Verve meets Spiritualized meets The Beach Boys vibe. The guitartastic “Firefly” soon followed and heads bobbed as the most instantly accessible track on their album was aired. “It Ain’t Right,” “Hold On,” “Everything We Are,” and a new song dedicated to their manager, Scott, were all among the songs in the set list, but it was first single “Hard Road” (introduced as the song that you will “love, cherish, and make love to”), in all its “Man Called Sun” glory, that epitomized the quality of the evening. A rolling bass groove, slide guitar atmospherics and Ashley’s throaty-yet-soaring vocal lines launching the track into the New York night. Closing the set as they do with the album, with the shuffling and expansive “Coming Down”, The Shore showed again that their rock side is as addictive and appealing as their downtempo moments. The live renditions just further cemented their album’s place in my year-end top 10; if you’re looking for records to place in yours, get your hands on a copy of The Shore. Pronto. Your brain’s pleasure center will thank you. And big ups to David Grant, while I’m at it.