The Return of We Are Scientists

July 15th, 2010

We Are Scientists – The Bowery Ballroom – July 14, 2010

We Are Scientists - The Bowery Ballroom - July 14, 2010

After some time away from playing shows in New York City while they worked on their newest album, Barbara, We Are Scientists returned to a sold-out Bowery Ballroom last night. They dove right into the new, showcasing standout songs like “Rules Don’t Stop” and “Nice Guys.” The three-piece, led by guitar player and vocalist Keith Murray, sustained a larger sound without relying on massive amounts of effects pedals or audio loops to fill in the gaps. With anywhere up to all three members singing at once during the band’s arena-ready shout choruses, the crowd even helped them fill in the inevitable space.

That’s not to say We Are Scientists didn’t use dynamics, however: Murray and drummer Andy Burrows cut out often during crowd favorite “Chick Lit” while bassist Chris Cain showed his sonic strengths. Murray and Cain kept things light between songs, bantering back and forth about everything from Yo Gabba Gabba! to Eric Bana’s role as the Incredible Hulk. The songs from Barbara sounded great, with most of them, played live, having an airier quality, drawing from the British New Wave sound they began to embrace on their last album, Brain Thrust Mastery. In contrast, the trio’s older songs stood out even more, with their churning bass and drums making “Dinosaurs,” “Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt” and the tongue-twisting verses of “The Great Escape” addictive. —Sean O’Kane

Photos courtesy of Sean O’Kane |