Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Duke Spirit @ Music Hall of Williamsburg

The Duke Spirit; Mobius Band; Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers
@ Music Hall of Williamsburg
Brooklyn, NY - February 16, 2009

Leila Moss is no doubt the center of the Duke Spirit, a ferocious pretty modern rock band from Britain. The whiskey-voiced lead singer carries the front woman mantle with ease, involving the crowd in her vocals, her movements, and her personality. The band behind her play a pretty standard set of driving, loud rock though songs like "Lassoo" of course stand out for their particular hooks. Interestingly, the two ballads played were more impressive than the majority of the hard rockers. Maybe that's where this band's future lies. It should also stick to more of those Western-style songs that Leila seems to like, it lends them a more distinct and successful overall rock sound.

Mobius Band seemed an odd fit to be playing with the Duke Spirit, even though they have played with them before. These New England pop dudes would be a better fit with a band like the Submarines as they share that band's penchant for synth-inflected Indie pop music that also relies on a drummer keeping things grounded. Unlike the Submarines however, Mobius Band doesn't seem to have a radio-ready hit in their catalog yet, though a couple songs did have those elements that showed where this band could go.

Shilpa Ray was once the lead singer of Beat the Devil. Now under her own moniker, Shilpa still belts out that striking rock voice against some rough-edged backdrops and in fact, she made for the exact kind of opener the Duke Spirit needed.

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