Friday, January 10, 2014

Show Preview: Saintseneca w/ LVLUP at Local 506

Saintseneca (website)
Clockwise from top r: Zac Little, Matthew O'Conke,
Steve Ciolek, Maryn Jones.
The last time Saintseneca made their way to our little triangle of the nation, I was supremely dejected to discover I had missed them. It was mid-2012 when I first heard their debut LP Last [spotify], and I have been listening to it, or at least tracks from it, a minimum of once a week since then. It came as some great relief, then, that Saintseneca would be back to North Carolina, and this time, not in Raleigh, but the Local 506, which is in walking distance from HQ. It was some cosmic gift: "You couldn't make it out, we'll bring them closer to you."

Accurately describing Saintseneca is problematic. No words, no matter how artfully crafted or presented, will correctly articulate their sound. They're a folk band, for sure, but a unique brand. Anchored by Zac Little's nasal voice and introspective lyricism, the band vacillates between high-energy DIY circuit inspired stomp and the traditionally flavored folk song, but with an ear for artful craftsmanship.

Their latest release Uppercutter, a single from their upcoming Anti- records debut, Dark Arc, sees them expanding on the production and arrangement of their songs, which is exciting. It's akin to giving a painter another box of paintbrushes and some new paints. While the core elements haven't changed, the presentation and craft are elevated.

The show opener, LVLUP, peals with a lofi 90's guitar rock vibe. Moving between heartfelt ballad-like tunes and heavily rhythmic, guitar-focused horsepower, these Brooklyn natives draw deep from the well of early indie-, alt-, and punk rock monoliths. Band members have specifically cited Superchunk and Pavement among their influences, as well as Jawbreaker and Lifetime, adding in a July 2012 interview, "I think it’s a given that all of us draw from bands like Modest Mouse and Built To Spill."

Saintseneca and LVLUP will be at the Local 506 Sunday, January 12th. Admission is $8 in advance and $10 at the door.

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