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The Naked and Famous Rock Crescent Ballroom

I would like to file an insurance claim against The Naked and Famous: my ears have been blown to bits.

Hailing from New Zealand (it’s an island!), their hugely popular album Passive Me, Aggressive You had droves of Phoenicians packed into the glorious Crescent Ballroom Tuesday night.

The Naked and Famous created quite an ambient atmosphere for being so loud, morphing their eardrum shattering performance with a delicate mixture of sound.

Alisa Xayalith sang, danced and manned the keys next to other singer Thom Powers whose deep voice translated perfectly from the recording.

Los Angeles band White Arrows opened things up and I was taken by their overlaying of voices and sounds.

This night was also something of a ‘drummer’s special.’ All three bands displayed some amazing drumming, the White Arrows employing a poppy, staccato drumming style.

The Naked and Famous drummer Jesse Woods created so many sounds, electronic and traditional, there were times I couldn’t take my eyes off of him.

The Chain Gang of 1974 followed White Arrows, and the crowd responded enthusiastically to their melodic, bouncy rock and deceptively foppish lead singer.

As their set wore on, I was reminded of various 80s rocks acts their sound played off of – Happy Monday, Cocteau Twins, etc. And all this culminated in a glorious mental image of Judd Nelson walking off the field to the Simple Minds. See this band, and you’ll get it.

This band would make a great litmus test for possible suitors. You say you like me, but can you also dig an 80s rock-esque band with a lead singer who’s like Morrissey on speed?

The last thing I heard was Xayalith saying goodnight, ending on an incredible rendition of “Young Blood,” as the crowd hit the ground for the last time after spending the night in a feverish dance frenzy.

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