Last week about forty rabid fans, myself among them, made the potentially perilous trip to Santos Party House for a concert featuring a band whose name noone can pronounce. Tonstartssbandht. Tahn-STARTS-band. I think. They made a track dedicated to explaining it and I still don't think I've mastered it. The brothers White have been terrorizing Montreal with their heavy samples and crippling melodies for a while, and this summer decided to take up residence in NYC.
Essentially opening for them at this show was Matthew Mondanile, playing as Ducktails but with a full band for the first time. In between rocking brutal versions of his summer psychedelia, Mondanile revealed his soft side - a shy, New Jersey kid hiding behind glasses and thanking his audience after every song.
Then came Tonstartssbandht. This show blew me away. They have a unique take on the sampler/vocal melody approach. Their debut album (cd-r?), An When, showcases the best of this side of the band. Their beats are heavy, their harmony delicate, intricate, and powerful. Powerful enough to be retailed at Other Music, at least. They have graciously posted a few tracks on the FMA, and hinted that there are more to come. They sound vaguely like Animal Collective, vaguely like the Beach Boys, vaguely like a youth choir backed by Led Zeppelin.
After working through their hits, however, they picked up their instruments. Eddy sat down at the drums and began pounding away like the prodigious gorilla from the Cadbury cream ad. Soon after, Andy picked up a guitar, turned off the delay, and unleashed up a tone that could've taken Wolverine in a fist fight. Suddenly, this was a rock show. The duo was leaping around, mixing noise and blues, demolishing eardrums, and reminding everyone why bands used to play instruments. In the future, music will sound something like this.