The indie-folk-rock band The Loom, from Brooklyn, and fresh off the bus from SXSW in Austin, launched Friday night’s show at Union Pool with a set of sometimes-melancholic, sometimes-upbeat original songs—several from their new album, “Teeth,” just recorded in Chinatown in February.
The band, led by guitarist and frontman John Fanning, who sports a substantial mustache, is made up of drums, banjo, electric bass, keys, ukulele, and girl in miniskirt and hoop earrings on trumpet.
The Loom took the silent crowd through moments of introspection with a rousing and catchy tune that must have been named “Let’s Hold On Tight” (because keys-player Sydney Price had to sing the line about 48 times before the song ends). The song halts abruptly, and is met with explosive applause.
After a short break of standing around the fire on Union Pool’s big outdoor deck, which is tucked between the BQE and the bar’s sedentary Taco Truck, the crowd shuffled back to the stage for Uke of Spaces Corners—which is singer/songwriter Dan Beckman of Belfast, ME and his artfully beatup guitar.
Luckily for the audience, Uke of Spaces Corners’ music is much harder to forget than that cumbersome name (what’s with the whole “Spaces Corners” double-plural thing?) Wearing a denim collar under a vest, with long curly hair falling over massive glasses, Uke played a set of pretty songs, tinged with reverb, which made us feel like we were in a log cabin deep in some Appalachian forest, rather than under the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway.
After Uke finished his set, the Hall filled up such that the entrance was bottlenecked with smokers and late-comers. The indie chamber-folk sextet Dark Dark Dark took the stage. The band divides its time between NYC, New Orleans, and Minneapolis where they recently recorded a new EP, the aptly-named Bright Bright Bright. (They also released a full-length album in 2008 called The Snow Magic.)
Dark Dark Dark’s music, created with accordions, horns, percussion, banjos, and clarinets (to name a few) is majestic, serious, and lyrically-rich. The crowd was in awe—utterly silent, and definitely not buying any drinks. “Is it weird listening to lounge folk music on a Friday night?” the banjo player joked. “It’s absolutely beautiful,” someone in the crowd yelled. And it was.