Powerpop Preview: Jamie & Steve of The Spongetones LIVE at The Chop Shop
Last year we previewed shows by North Carolina bands The Stars Explode, Tommy Flake, and The dB’s. Having just reviewed the new EP from Jamie (Hoover) & Steve (Stoeckel) entitled Imaginary Cafe, the timing of their debut show in support of the disc is fortuitous to say the least.
While the imaginary cafe described in the title song is only a figment of the imagination, the guys will do their best to make those words a reality this Saturday night January 26th at the Chop Shop NoDa in Charlotte NC. Showtime is 8pm.
Imaginary Cafe is a truly excellent set of songs so when I heard about the show and the opportunity to hear much of the EP performed live, I got understandably excited. And then I heard the coupe de grace. Don Dixon (he of Arrogance and Praying Mantis fame) will be opening. I’ve seen/heard Don perform and I can tell you first hand, he’s got a soulful voice and a stage presence that you’ll remember long after you leave the club.
Here’s the lineup the way I understand it:
Don Dixon goes on at 8pm
Jamie & Steve at 9:15
Hannah Thomas at 10:30
While I don’t have any specifics on the set they have planned, I imagine that Jamie & Steve’s will be Imaginary Cafe heavy. But that doesn’t mean we won’t hear additional songs from their prior outstanding EP, The Next Big Thing, one of the absolute best releases of 2011 and a powerpop fan’s delight. This EP had some of the most memorable tunes of that year, including the Spongetones-esque “Can We Start Again, Girl” and the slightly twisted, XTC meets Joe Jackson track entitled “Half a Mind”. I don’t know if “Half a Mind” is conducive to live performance but it would be an absolute blast to hear the guys perform it in a small (padded?) room.
I must confess to knowing nothing about Hannah Thomas but, to share a bill with these other fine artists, she must be pretty awesome.
You can find out more about any of these artists here:
Don Dixon – http://www.dondixonmusic.com/
Jamie & Steve – http://www.jamieandsteve.net/
Hannah Thomas – http://www.hannahthomasband.com/