Photos: Dawes, Nick Waterhouse, and others rock the Echoplex for a good cause

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Dawes

This past Saturday night at the Echoplex, a variety of mostly L.A. based musicians turned up in support of fellow musician Richard Gowen in an effort to raise money for mounting hospital bills. Those that showed up at the posted doors time saw more than six hours of live music for $20, as good of a value as you’ll get anywhere – even better when taking into account the quality of music on display. Though each act played between roughly 30 minutes to a full hour, you got nothing but quality from each.

Los Angeles foursome Dawes can most certainly be considered a consistent powerhouse, opening 2014 as the headlining act. I first heard Dawes not from a studio recording, but at the inaugural Life is Beautiful Festival in Las Vegas this past October. I had heard good things and took them in and they were easily one of my favorite sets of the festival to the point I anxiously awaited another tour date.

They played between 45 minutes to an hour on, by this time what was Sunday morning. Of all the acts whom played that night, Dawes has the sound most likely to become mainstream (and I mean that in the best of ways). They bring a prime Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers sound with a little twang to boot. They definitely have proven they can carry a headlining set at this point of their career as they got the largest reaction of the evening.

Tracks “Fire Away” and “From a Window Seat”, off their 2011 release Nothing Is Wrong, had a majority of those in attendance singing along to verses, rather than just the catchy pop choruses. One imagines this is what the early live performances of the Eagles must have sounded like, and it wouldn’t be out of the question for this band to reach similar success. It’s almost impossible to catch their live show and not immediately be interested in finding your way back. With the word of mouth on this group growing, the sky’s the limit.

nick waterhouse photosNick Waterhouse

Los Angeles’ Nick Waterhouse makes the kind of music that you can’t help but dance to. Though the Echoplex was packed kind of tight, his set had nearly everybody moving. His throwback Buddy Holly look fit well with his throwback sound. Waterhouse brought an R&B element to the evening and helped break things up a bit without his set feeling at all out of place. Waterhouse jammed a bit with Allah-Las, which was a nice surprise and gelled really well.

Allah-Las of Los Angeles is a band I had never previously heard—at least I thought I hadn’t. Then they played a song I know for sure I recognized; thanks to the wonders of the internet in the palm of your hand, I discovered that “Busman’s Holiday” had been in my brain thanks to a Miller Lite commercial. Their sound is very 1960s and very early Doors as well as the Beach Boys. I felt as though this is the kind of music my father would have enjoyed as he served in the Army in the late sixties, and after taking them in live, I’ll have to pass along their music to find out how on the money I am. While surf-rock has become quite popular the last few years, Allah-Las’ live sound is what people probably dream of when the genre is brought up.

I showed up early enough to catch Pink Mountaintops just beginning their set. They hold the distinction of being the other band featuring Black Mountain’s Stephen McBean, one that until then, I hadn’t had the privilege of hearing. The sound features a sort-of mix of Jesus and Mary Chain with a bit of Velvet Underground, which no doubt agreed with the overdose of hipsters in attendance. It served as a nice appetizer for what was to come as it sounded much differently than anything that came after.

Take a look at the photos below of Dawes, Nick Waterhouse, Allah-Las and Pink Mountaintops at the Echoplex!

Words: Mark E. Ortega

Photography: Dominoe Farris-Gilbert

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-GilbertDawes

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Dawes

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Dawes

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Dawes

Dawes photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Dawes

Nick Waterhouse photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Nick Waterhouse

Nick Waterhouse photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Nick Waterhouse

Allah-Las photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Allah-Las

Allah-Las photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Allah-Las

Allah-Las photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Allah-Las

Allah-Las photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Allah-Las

Pink Mountaintops photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Pink Mountaintops

Pink Mountaintops photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Pink Mountaintops

Pink Mountaintops photo by Dominoe Farris-Gilbert
Pink Mountaintops

 

For more photos of Dawes, Nick Waterhouse, Allah-Las and Pink Mountaintops, click through the photo gallery below!

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