Oberhofer (with Pond and Jeane) at Bowery Ballroom [3/21/12]

Posted on: March 26th, 2012 at 11:27 am by

When we last caught indie wunderkind Brad Oberhofer at a local show, we were blown away and wanted more. Last Wednesday at the Bowery Ballroom, we got just what we came for and then some.

Brad Oberhofer signed to Glassnote last summer, and this show he played cuts from his hotly-anticipated record Time Capsules II. Much of the album is comprised from the material on his demos/EPs/previous touring repertoire. After time spent in the studio with producer Steve Lillywhite, Oberhofer’s songs have taken on a livelier dimension, and the transition was on display in full force.

Opening the night was Jeane, a group we discovered last summer via Oberhofer contributor (and sartorial wizard) Dylan Treleven. Jeane plays dance-pop that can be anywhere from dark to dreamy, with some really thick and catchy bass lines. Lead singer Paul Dally sounds a lot like Julian Casablancas with his mixture of deep crooning and feisty snarling shouts.

Up next was Pond, but not the 90s Portland band of the same name, fresh off a buzz generating stop at SXSW. Pond hit the stage bursting with energy and wasted no time in getting noticed for their oddball appearances. Guitarist with a crazy ‘fro? Check. Jittery, waifish figured guy with a bleached blonde mop? Check.

The Aussie group danced, wrestled, hip-checked each other off of the stage and walked through the crowd. Their set had a wonderful flow to it, implemented by the drummer and his ability to push the band from song to song in blocks without a break. Interacting with the audience came later. Pond played a very wide range of styles, with everything from Delta Spirit and Deer Tick influences. Most evidently influential was a sound similar to a beached-out, plastic toned Black Sabbath, and lead singer Nick Allbrook did everything short of eating a bat to reach Prince of Darkness level stage craziness. (Hilarious: He accidentally smacked himself in the face while adjusting his microphone).

Guitarist Joseph “Orion” Ryan explained afterwards how Black Sabbath directly influenced much of the band’s writing: “there was consideration of making a 5 song EP of coke era Sabbath songs that we were gonna call  ‘Coke Sabbath.’ You can hear that influence most prevalently in “Moth Wings.” He also vocalized his thoughts regarding the increasing number of new American fans who point out his resemblance to members of the douche-pop group LMFAO: “Yeah! I get that a lot now! Fuuuck thaaaat, man.”

Oberhofer finally got on stage at around 11 pm, and the post-SXSW homecoming set began. With much of his material previously released on his self-titled EP, the crowd eagerly sang along from the moment “Gotta Go” started up. Brad and his touring band could barely contain their energy, dancing wildly and jumping off of the drum kit at points. They sprinkled in some new album material, including the incredibly catchy “Landline” and “Cruising down FDR,” a simple summery jingle about speeding down the FDR Drive in a borrowed car. The song obviously was not written anywhere near the Brooklyn Bridge exit.

In between songs, during a long pause, the band remarked that they were concurrently being shown on Letterman, where they had previously taped: “we’re in 2 places at the same time! we’re on Letterman right now.”

At only 21 years old, Bradley Oberhofer’s energy is absolutely contagious. He routinely reaches euphoric peaks, whether feverishly strumming his guitar or shouting his trademark “OOoooh”s which are the backbone of much of his work. The man is an absolute virtuoso on any instrument and played nearly every note on the forthcoming album. He has the charm, talent, and general New Yorkiness (via Tacoma in his case) of Ezra Koenig, Avey Tare, and Julian Casablancas. Having already made quite a name for himself, it’s amazing to imagine what the future holds for him and his touring band.

Time Capsules II is out on Glassnote Records on Monday, March 26.

Writeup and photos by Benjy Tocker

Recent Stories

2-Way Traffic Returns to Grand Street as Water Main Project Concludes

Grand Street can finally breathe after more than five years of roadwork related to a trunk water main. Closer to home, the stranglehold between the Bowery and Essex Street, which began in February 2015, is “substantially complete,” according to the city. Pavement was resurfaced and striped over the last month. The only real remnant of […]

There is a 50-Foot Henry Rollins Towering Above NoHo for Calvin Klein

Nothing gets between punk and its Calvins. As of this past summer, Calvin Klein counts Henry Rollins as one of its brand ambassadors. Touting all the wild and reckless shit he’s done while dressed in their clothes. Now, the former Black Flag front man, poet, and all around badass is towering fifty feet above East […]

Overbuilt ‘Orchard Street Hotel’ Again Seeks Booze in Saturated Hell Square

For the second time in as many years, hotel operators Nico Moinian and Nader Ohebshalom will try again to install nightlife at the Orchard Street Hotel. As before, it’s an uphill battle in Hell Square that won’t be easy. The lodge opened at 163 Orchard last year, yet without the food and beverage component on which profit […]

‘Taqueria Diana’ will Open at 69 Clinton Street this Spring, Potentially with ‘Street Seat’ in Tow

No more dumplings; no more dookie chains. With C&C Dumpling and the La Socia Pawn Shop gone from 69 Clinton Street, the popular Taqueria Diana restaurant is ready to take over. Both inside and out. Yep. Taqueria Diana is definitely opening a second outpost at 69 Clinton Street, as we first reported over the summer. […]

Photo: EV Grieve
It’s Time to Seriously Protest Moxy Hotel’s Demolition of an East Village Block

Grab the pitchforks. Marriott hotels, vis-a-vis landowner Lightstone Group, began demolition of a half-block of East Village history earlier this month to construct a 300-room lodge. That’s Moxy. The hotel, that is, geared specifically toward millenials with disposable income. The doomed real estate in question is five “landmark-eligible” buildings comprising 112-120 East 11th Street (across from Webster Hall). […]