On Saturday, Surfer Blood headlined at Music Hall of Williamsburg with Team Spirit, Andy Boay and Grand Rapids. Surfer Blood is a group that I have been following pretty regularly. Following their SXSW performances in 2010, I caught them as a freshly buzzing band on back-to-back nights at the Underworld in London for MTV's Camden Crawl. They made an impression then with their catchy, riff-based pop-rock and succinct, melodic arrangements. Over the years, I saw them several more times, at the Village Voice's last Siren Festival, at the Kanine Records Northside festival showcase, at CMJ, and finally at the Universal showcase at SXSW. I've seen the group grow considerably in that time. Enough of the history lesson, though, let's move on to what I saw last night.
Surfer Blood is a group that continues to grow with every passing show. The defining idiosyncrasies of the group have remained consistent throughout the years. At their heart, they stay dedicated to the riff-centric, Thin Lizzy style guitar harmonies, surf-punk influenced pop rock. At Music Hall of Williamsburg, I saw the group perform tunes throughout their repertoire, from Astro Coast to Tarot Classics and finally their newly released Pythons with the high energy no-nonsense, business-like approach I'd become accustomed to seeing. The band has always been tight, but they ripped through their set with a smooth crispness that was refreshing and made me excited for what they've got laid out ahead. Clearly, working with Gil Norton, who produced the Pixies and the Foo Fighters, gave this already talented group some insight into how to arrange more delicately, while refining the finer nuances of their respective deliveries.
Surfer Blood's performances have always maintained a tight grip on their captive audiences. With the continued work they've put into their craft, they can likely expect more of the same for a long time to come. Over the years I've seen this band transform from talented garage style indie band to something quite a bit more serious than that. The development of their harmony concepts has certainly pushed them forward. At their current pace, this band looks to exceed expectations with their hooky guitar-based style of rock 'n' roll.
Check out Surfer Blood: http://www.surferblood.com/