Characteristically distinctive sounds rang out throughout the day during the sixth annual Switchboard Music Festival in San Francisco on Sunday, March 24, 2013. This was the third year in a row the festival has been held at the Brava Theater in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District. The Brava is easily accessible by public transportation or car (although parking can be a nightmare), and makes a great venue for the festival. I hope they are able to continue using the space for many more years to come. Just like last year’s festival, Switchboard incorporated elements of local culture into their show, including a food truck parked right out front selling Indian food. Unfortunately, the food didn’t agree with some of the audience as well as last year’s truck did, I heard several festival attendees complaining of indigestion as the night wore on. Thankfully, the music suffered no ill effects.
Composer, accordionist, and multi-instrumentalist Rob Reich (photo credit: robreich.com)
Build is a Brooklyn-based indie-classical band consisting of Matt McBane, violin/compositions; Andrea Lee, cello; Michael Cassedy, piano; Ben Campbell, bass; and Adam D. Gold, drums. Both in its make-up and music, Build is fundamentally a hybrid group. Since forming in December 2006, it has developed a body of work and a performance style that draw on (to name few) minimalist chamber music, instrumental rock, modal jazz, American fiddle music, experimentalism, and film music, reflecting Matt’s interests as a composer and the backgrounds of the band members. Time Out New York described Build as a “quintet that straddles the increasingly permeable line between chamber music and instrumental rock.”
Don’t miss Eart Heart Music’s Opening Party at Roulette!
June 12th at Drom in NYC was a meeting of contemporary art music sensibilities with a rock/pop format. The result was something that was inviting, catchy, and groove-oriented but at the same time cerebrally satisfying. Build is a self-described indie-classical band whose compositions draw out the strength of each of its individual members and put infectious string melodies front and center. Empyrean Atlas’s music is driven by interlocking loops or guitars and saxophone with drums and building dynamics defining larger structures. Both groups gave enticing performances that were a solid departure from much of the drivel that abounds in the “art-rock” scene of New York.