ARMS (Solo) – Tickets – Glasslands Gallery – Brooklyn, NY – November 11th, 2011

ARMS (Solo)

Early Show

ARMS (Solo)

Hospitality, Franz Nicolay, The Building

Fri, November 11, 2011

Doors: 8:30 pm / Show: 8:30 pm

Glasslands Gallery

Brooklyn, NY

$10.00

This event is 21 and over

ARMS (Solo)
ARMS (Solo)
From 2004 to 2009, Todd Goldstein wrote music under the name ARMS, playing most of the instruments himself and recording them in his bedroom in the moments between playing guitar in his main band at the time, Brooklyn's long-running, modestly beloved Harlem Shakes. As ARMS, Todd quietly released the album Kids Aflame in 2008 / 2009 (Melodic UK / Gigantic US). In the summer of 2009, Harlem Shakes disbanded. Upon the breakup of his longtime band, Todd recruited Tlacael Esparza to play drums and Matty Fasano to play bass and sing the songs he'd been writing all along. Soon, the trio began writing songs together, and ARMS was born anew.

ARMS is no longer Todd's solo pseudonym - it's the name of the music that comes out when Todd, Matty, and Tlacael play together. Sad, beautiful, echo-y music that sounds like everything they've loved, blown apart and then put back together piece by piece. ARMS' new EP - called, appropriately, "EP" - is the first five songs of what will become the band's true debut full-length, a loose concept album / song cycle tentatively titled Summer Skills.
Hospitality
Hospitality
The angular, intricate, and intelligent compositions of Hospitality signal a sophisticated new pop voice. Singer Amber Papini’s idiosyncratic songwriting and incisive lyrics coupled with the band’s rich arrangements on their self-titled debut explore youth, New York, and the bittersweet commingling of past and present in a way that feels just right, right now.
From the opening phrase of “Eighth Avenue,” guitar hooks are balanced with a cultivated melody. Papini’s singing has a wisp of an English accent via Kansas City (she learned to sing by imitating Richard Butler on The Psychedelic Furs’ Talk Talk Talk) and her lyrics create a moonstruck, even cinematic vision of New York City, where the band formed in 2007. The production by Shane Stoneback (Vampire Weekend, Sleigh Bells) and band member Nathan Michel (guitar, drums, keyboards), who released his share of experimental “bedroom” pop, culminating in 2005’s The Beast (Skipp/Sonig), imbues the entire record with an intimate yet prodigious sound, layering period keyboards with horns, synthesizers, and treated guitars.
Hospitality the album has an overarching vision and should be listened to as a whole, though every song registers as a single. (Will Merge take a cue from Epic’s Thriller campaign and release seven singles? They should!) “Friends of Friends” could break the Hot 100 with its heavy intro, swingin’ breakdown, and horn riffs; “Betty Wang,” the lynchpin of their live set a few years back, is impossibly catchy, the story of one of Papini’s real-life colleagues at a financial day job; and “The Right Profession” is a power-pop burst of an anthem with Papini chanting the immortal line, “It’s hard to change!” (Isn’t it?) And “The Birthday,” with a sinuous, dissonant lead guitar, the lockstep rhythm of the drums, and Brian Betancourt’s nimble bass, wouldn’t be out of place on The Police’s debut record, but its epic coda makes it decidedly CinemaScope. Hospitality, while hearkening back to ’70s/’80s pop—both Elvis Costello and Kate Bush are influences—has an ambitious vision: its big promise is nowhere more evident than on the gorgeous anthem “Julie,” the album’s centerpiece which already sounds like a classic. The song’s lush, glorious build is coupled with lyrics inspired by Papini’s great-grandfather, a Pennsylvania coalminer.
Reprising some songs from a self-released 2008 EP recorded by Karl Blau (K Records) allows Hospitality to nod to its beginnings as a more lo-fi outfit; that early intimacy can be found in the arrangement of the cheeky and distinctly NC-17 “Liberal Arts.” Since recording its LP, the band has become a quartet, filling out its live sound with Kyle Olson on drums and Michel moving to lead guitar duties. And after patiently honing its craft, playing concerts (and gaining converts), Hospitality has reached what will be its first apex with many more heights to come; from their modest debut in a Red Hook row house, the band has evolved from four-track low-fidelity to a luxury five-star future.
For their forthcoming debut LP (due in January), Hospitality have widened the iris with the help of producer Shane Stoneback (Vampire Weekend, Sleigh Bells), letting in new colors and textures while continuing to pack an impressive degree of musical and lyrical sophistication into the pop song structure, along with a refreshing fondness for experimentation that should turn the heads of casual listeners and merciless critics alike.

Since recording, Michel has traded his trap kit for electric guitar (an instrument he’s been known to wield on his various brilliant solo efforts [Google him]), and the band has added drummer Kyle Olson to the lineup, transforming the once minimalist trio into a fully orchestrated quartet with quite the engaging live show.
Franz Nicolay
Franz Nicolay
Franz Nicolay is that mustachioed man-about-town you may have seen with such groups as The Hold Steady, World/Inferno Friendship Society, and Guignol and is now touring in support of his first full length solo album Major General. "Eclectic and ambitious but unshowy, Major General is about as satisfying as any solo effort from a member of an established band still killing it themselves as I can think of. ... The sound largely vacillates between the rockers, the ballads, and the spindly gypsy-folk numbers. Because Nicolay's got some opera in his throat and some unusual stuff in his arrangements, something like Frog Eyes might be the best reference point for these." --Pitchfork
The Building
The Building
“You’re Still Champ” EP is made up of instrumental elements from The Building's forthcoming album “The Swooshy Businessman”. In the context of the songs that they are from, these elements might get buried or brushed over. But when presented on their own, they become romanticized versions of themselves; sounding more grand and important than they actually are. There is also the possibility for them to sound superfluous and not worth being presented outside the context of their song. This idea of perception of memory is also central to the songs of “The Swooshy Businessman”.
Venue Information:
Glasslands Gallery
289 Kent Avenue
Brooklyn, NY, 11249
http://www.theglasslands.com/