Tag Archives: Mike Kinsella
Tim Kinsella (vocals), Mike Kinsella (drums), Victor Villareal (guitar) and Sam Zurick (bass) had been making music together in a variety of bands—including emo pioneers Cap’n Jazz—since high school in Chicago when they decided to give it a go officially as Owls. The quartet put out an angular, exploratory self-titled album (stream it below) produced by Steve Albini in 2001. AllMusic said, “Owls may not take over music based on this disc, but it is still a fine achievement and many of the collaborators’ best work in years.” But a year later, the band broke up and the members went their separate ways. And that’s where this story would have ended if they hadn’t reunited in 2012. After a considerable amount of time spent writing and recording, Owls released their second full-length, the aptly titled Two (stream it below) this past March. Again, AllMusic weighs in: “Though they took over a decade to follow up their first album, Two still sounds like a band a decade ahead of its time.” See them tomorrow night at The Bowery Ballroom. Hop Along and Glocca Morra open the show.
Tags: Bowery Ballroom, Cap’n Jazz, Glocca Morra, Hop Along, Mike Kinsella, Owls, Preview, Sam Zurick, Steve Albini, Tim Kinsella, Two, Victor Villareal, Video
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Owen – Mercury Lounge – October 9, 2009
There was something strikingly old fashioned but noticeably modern about Mike Kinsella’s set—performing as Owen—at Mercury Lounge on Friday night. If you closed your eyes and just listened to him and his acoustic guitar, it was easy to imagine that you were at an intimate James Taylor show circa 1970. The packed crowd listened to Kinsella’s simple, personal lyrics sung in a pristinely sweet voice. His set list, merely a suggestion as he took requests from the crowd, was written in pen on his hand, and it smeared while he played.
Between songs, Kinsella bantered about topics like President Obama’s Nobel Prize and Facebook statuses, all the while a girl up front recorded the show on her Flip Video camera. Open your eyes and Kinsella was suddenly just as much Zach Galifianakis as he was James Taylor. For an hour he bounced around from slowly soft songs to upbeat pop tunes, drastically shifting the tuning on his guitar each time. Some of the highlights included “Good Friends, Bad Habits,” and “New Leaves.” By the set’s end, Kinsella had entranced everyone in the crowd, drawing them in with his Taylor-like skills and Galifianakis-like humor. And even when a cell phone interfered with the speakers, Kinsella’s music rang louder. —Sean O’Kane
Photos courtesy of Sean O’Kane | seanokanephoto.com