Two Nights of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. in NYC This Week

November 11th, 2014

Joshua Epstein and Daniel Zott were each playing in different Detroit bands when they first met. But soon after, they began recording together in Zott’s suburban basement. It’s a Corporate World (stream it below), their first LP, which deftly combines Beach Boys-esque harmonies (they do a mean rendition of “God Only Knows”) and electronics, came out in 2011, but even prior to that, the two, performing as Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., became known for their high-octane live performances. In the spring of 2013, the Motown duo—above, performing “If You Didn’t See Me (Then You Weren’t on the Dancefloor)” on Conan—put out their third EP, the catchy, dance-heavy Patterns (stream it below), before releasing their second full-length, The Speed of Things (stream it below), last fall. Filled with dense electronic pop, rich melodies and pulsing beats, the album received a fair amount of praise. Paste effusively declared, “Epstein and Zott have concocted an album that will ultimately elude the dreaded ‘sophomore slump’ tag. They have stuck to a formula that worked on their debut but have taken it a step further. And while the album bolsters the band’s brand of sound rather than showcasing any significant amount growth in writing and arrangement, The Speed of Things is an exercise in consistency and accessibility. It’s refreshing.” They arrive in New York City for a pair of shows this week, on Thursday at Music Hall of Williamsburg and on Saturday at The Bowery Ballroom. L.A. trio Mini Mansions and Nashville singer-songwriter Madi Diaz open both nights.