Shone – Mercury Lounge – February 7, 2013
Since late December, a viral marketing campaign has been surrounding a new Long Island band that involved typewritten letters delivered through the mail, hidden treasure chests containing song-filled USB drives and pieces of canvas sent around the country (which eventually combined to make the album art), plus a whole lot of theater around a character named Levi Gudmondson and his apparent mental spiral dealing with a supposed murder. That band tuned out to be Shone, and in the middle of the whole campaign they released their debut album, Heat Thing, and announced a lone show at Mercury Lounge, where the band was finally revealed last night.
Up until the moments before the show, speculation grew online, but the identities were no longer concealed once the band took the stage for a 40-minute set, basically made up of the album, which deals mostly with the story (and mental anguish) of Gudmondson. The band was led by Robbers frontman Andrew Accardi, and he had a supporting cast of six (plus a cellist for one song) that included his brother, Vin, and drummers Brian Lane and Ben Homola. Most in attendance were expecting theatrics akin to the marketing campaign’s tone, after all the show was sold out before any significant part of the album had even been heard. But Shone did something that was perhaps better by just playing a loose, wild and brawny set that matched the awesomely catchy, bizarre rock that fills their debut release.
While Accardi sported face paint as drastic as his onstage movements, his banter was light—and humbled: “So some of you heard the record … and still decided to come?” In all, it was perhaps as polarizing a show as the album itself. But just like in the campaign that started it all, the puzzle pieces fit, even if a few seams were showing. And for those hoping there’s more on Shone’s horizon, look no further than Levi Gudmondson himself and what he tweeted at (what seemed to be) the end of the campaign: “this is but a chapter….” —Sean O’Kane