School of Seven Bells and VOICEsVOICEs at The Echo 6/2 – Show Review & Photos

LA’s VoicesVoices album covers may be a bit deceiving. Day-glo Easter-egg colored galaxies, morphed-up animals and rainbows adorn the covers of this female duo’s two EP releases. Opening for New York’s School of Seven Bells last week at The Echo, their hypnotic blend of droning, almost tribal atmospheric haze is by no means even the least bit garish, as the aforementioned artwork may suggest. The duo Nico Turner and Jenean Farris, originally both drummers, swirl through post-rock receptivity, dooming drone and a lush old-world rapture that makes me truly feel that they are one of LA’s most promising and enveloping sonic surprises.

School of Seven Bells

New York threesome—in their press photos, quartet live—School of Seven Bells drew a sizable, elbow-rubbing crowd to the small Echo last Wednesday. Their acclaimed debut “Aplinisms” (Ghostly) from 2008 is still a firm example of the electro-tinged, shoegaze-soaked dreampop that still permeates the blogosphere these days. Led by identical twins Alejandra and Claudia Deheza (of On! Air! Library! if you remember), backed by guitarist Benjamin Curtis (formerly of The Secret Machines) and a live drummer, the band’s slow-growing and stirring sound seemed a bit idle once in a live setting. It was at times difficult to pick standouts from fillers as the overall set, still pensive and well-played, appeared to somewhat meld into itself as time elapsed. It very well could’ve just been an off night for the New York act as time has shown their material (“Alpinisms” is still a great listen) is very much worth your time.

The band’s latest single, “Windstorm,” the lively opener from LP two, “Disconnect From Desire” (out July 13th via Vagrant/Ghostly) is available now and features a B-side and remix from A Place to Bury Strangers.

Words and Photos: Matt Draper

School of Seven Bells


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