24 August 2010

Live: Mates of State @ The Echo

{ "So cute with their matrimony." }

Who: Mates of State
Where: The Echo, Echo Park, CA
When: Friday, 02 July 2010

{Mates Of State - "The Re-Arranger"}

An old friend of mine was visiting Los Angeles and she crashed at my place for several days.

Now, a situation like this is always potentially tricky because you usually get sick of the house guest and can't wait for their departure from your home and your life.

But it turned out to be a nice time because:
  1. She has - what I call - a low Friend-Carbon Footprint (i.e. she wasn't in the way and was pleasant company).
  2. She likes to drink.
  3. She likes to listen to good music.
  4. She likes to go to rock 'n' roll concerts.
Done and done.

So, I texted her one day to see if she wanted to see Mates Of State at The Echo and she texted back, "I love Mates of State! So cute with their matrimony."

And, y'know what? They are pretty darn cute.

Now, I know what you're thinking, "Jeez, a married couple playing piano-driven indie-pop songs? Sounds like a recipe for Lame Sauce."

And it certainly IS a recipe for Lame Sauce. Look it up in any high-quality recipe book. It's there.

But this time, the Lame Sauce actually turned out to be really delicious.

Many signs point to Mates of State really not being the band that I would enjoy. I thought the cuteness would make me want to put ice-picks into my ears and permanently destroy my eardrums. But a few weeks before I even knew the show even existed I started listening to them more frequently. I'm not sure why. But I guess I was in a good mood because I really started to dig 'em.

So, here comes the perfect musical storm:
  • Friend who likes the band.
  • I just started getting into the band.
  • Live show at a small venue.
The show was like Baby Bear's porridge: Not too hard, not too soft, just right. The set was short and sweet and the crowd was friendly, energetic, and happy. I had several ounces of hard alcohol and sugary carbonated water coursing my veins. Good times.

I was certainly concerned about Concert Couples at this show but I was spared witnessing such behavior and the crowd was spared my vomit on floor.

I rather liked The Echo as well. A nice little venue with good sound, a bar with booze (crucial) and a nice smoking patio in the back (also crucial) where I can smoke and drink (even more crucial).

I told another friend - and a fan of Mates of State - about the show at The Echo and she mused, "I guess they're not going to make it very big, huh?"

Judging from the size of the venue, the ticket prices, and the cold hard reality of the Business, maybe they won't make it big. But you're pulling for 'em.

Mates of State have been around for a while and you would think, at this point, their brand of matriomonially-melodic music would find itself in all sorts of hip indie films and television shows and what not. But they're not quite there yet.

But if that means I can still see them up-close-and-personal at a small venue? I'm okay with that. These are the sorts of bands where you want to buy the records, you want to pay for the shows, and you want to buy their merch because you get the feeling that you're really supporting them and not feeding some major label, corporate machine.

But, y'know, if they got big, I'm okay with that too. I could always be That Guy who says, "Oh, I saw 'em at some tiny venue back in the day."

That would be +5 Hipster Points. But -3 points because I got on board the MoS train kinda late. But that's a net +2 Hipster Points. I'll take that to the Hipster Bank.

God, I hate Hipsters.

{Mates of State live at the Echo, 02 July 2010}

Crushes (The Covers Mixtape) Re-arrange Us
{Click the images and buy those records on Amazon!
Seriously, they're good. And, 'cause, y'know, you get a warm feeling inside too.}