A Euphoric Saturday Night with Geographer and GRMLNAugust 26th, 2013
Geographer/GRMLN – The Bowery Ballroom – August 24, 2013
It was clear that everyone at a sold-out Bowery Ballroom had high expectations for indie-rock trio Geographer and post-punk outfit GRMLN to grant some euphoria on a late-summer Saturday night. GRMLN delivered a brief but sensational set that provided the perfect introduction to Geographer. Hot on the heels of the release of their new album, Empire, GRMLN have teamed up with Geographer for an extensive American tour. Frontman Yoodoo Park had us nodding and jumping around like giddy teenagers.
Geographer have been keeping a low profile and recording new material for their next album, and as they took the stage, frontman Michael Deni saluted the audience, saying, “We’re happy to be playing our first headlining show in NYC!” They opened with crowd-favorite “Life of Crime.” The performance then unfolded with renditions of “Paris,” “Blinders” (with the special addition of Tim Cronin on trumpet), “Myth” and “Kaleidoscope.” “Dance with me, New York,” coaxed Deni as everyone swayed and sang along to “Lover’s Game” and “Kites.”
The room went dark and several people pulled out lighters during the haunting ballad “The Boulder,” causing the venue to glow as Deni’s voice echoed mournfully and the distorted sounds of cello and synthesizers grazed our ears. “Verona” got us dancing again, and we weren’t ready for the set to be over, so we cheered the band back onstage for an encore. They delivered a smooth cover of Arthur Russell’s “This Is How We Walk on the Moon” in which Deni pulled out a saxophone. The show closed with an especially synth-heavy “Original Sin” with Deni high-fiving people in the crowd. —Schuyler Rooth