So Bright For a Night

dsc06748On August 12, 2016 I headed to Junior High in Hollywood, CA to hear young singer-songwriters Matt Minigell and Annabelle Lord-Patey perform. Matt and Annabelle, who hail from Boston, were on their first ever tour of the West Coast, with Los Angeles being their final destination. Junior High is a non-profit that promotes “artistic pursuits of marginalized voices through events and arts education.” It’s a small space, but provides an opportunity for new musicians to polish their live acts in a supportive place. The space had good sound quality and the audience attending that evening was respectful and quiet. One thing the venue could improve on is front lighting for the musicians, which would make it easier to take better quality photos and video. Though the neon pink lighting from the Junior High sign did bathe the performers in rosy glow that night.

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Matt Minigell Performs at Junior High

Indie singer-songwriter Matt Minigell played the first set, marrying pleasing chord sequences and a rhythmic fingerpicking style to lyrics that painted vignettes of people, places, and feelings. His presentation was in earnest, and though sounding a little nervous while talking between songs, once he started playing guitar and singing he exuded a quiet confidence.  His lyrics touch upon the topics of enigmatic girls — the ones he wants and the ones he doesn’t; yearning to travel and the association between people and locations, as well as the ever in vogue themes of angst and apathy.   He played a handful of new songs and a few from his most recent independent album, Destructive Testing. I purchased a copy of the album before I left for the night and am really enjoying one of the songs he didn’t get to that evening, “Life is Bleak.” Musically it makes me think of a mash-up between Big Star and Oasis (especially that guitar solo) in their heyday.  Matt’s set for the evening included the songs:

  1. Midnight
  2. Pipe Dreaming
  3. If You Bring Me Flowers (Watch Out)” from Destructive Testing, link to video from this show
  4. Songs in G
  5. Nancy Says“from Destructive Testing, link is from my attempt to Periscope this song
  6. I Don’t Care About Anything” from Destructive Testing
  7. Even in my Dreams I’m Falling
  8. Game of Pricks” Guided By Voices cover
  9. A is for Corndogs” link is video of my attempt at using Facebook Live
  10. Big Empty Shoes
  11. Happy All the Time
  12. Sunday #1” link to video I took from this show
  13. Sappy Song” from Destructive Testing
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Annabelle Lord-Patey Performs at Junior High

Annabelle Lord-Patey released her album Polaris during the summer following a successful Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign. She was touring in support of the album. The lead single, “Oxytocin, Serotonin & Me” has been getting radio play on some of the more singer-songwriter friendly stations like KEXP and KCRW.  It’s a catchy song and I’d love to see it get picked up for the soundtrack of  a quirky indie coming of age film. Annabelle sings seemingly effortlessly with her soft, pretty, breezy voice. Her guitar playing style is similar to Matt’s, though she has a lighter touch.  Each song feels like a little gift wrapped with ribbon – a delight on first experience, but something is hidden inside on further investigation. She is starting her senior year of high school this year — it will be interesting to watch her career progress and see how her music develops as she matures. Annabelle’s set included:

  1. Killing the Blues” cover of a Rowland Salley song (link to his version)
  2. Fifteen (Little Freezing Clouds)” from Polaris
  3. Oxytocin Serotonin & Me” from Polaris, this links to the video I took at this show. Used a line from this song for the post title.
  4. Polaris” from Polaris, link to video I took at this show, you can see what I mean about the lighting
  5. Doomsday” from Polaris
  6. Wish You Well” from Polaris, link is from the Facebook live stream of this song and includes this song and the following two songs
  7. Jesus on the Dash” from Polaris
  8. Where I Get It From” from Polaris, cover of an unreleased Elliott Smith song, but if you search the Internet you can find his version on the Grand Mal compilation
  9. Sonnet 116” from Polaris

Encouraged by the crowd, they performed a quick encore together with Matt on guitar and Annabelle singing a cover of Paul Simon’s song, “Cloudy.”

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Matt Minigell and Annabelle Lord-Patey Performing “Clouds”

 

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