PARTY TIME: When David Byrne speaks, you listen. When he signs a band, though, you really listen. Since starting Luaka Bop Records back in 1988, the Talking Heads frontman has made it his mission to disseminate tunes from places both near and far. “The initial concept was no concept,” Byrne has said of the label. Begun as a means of releasing a set of Brazilian music compilations, Luaka has gone on to distribute myriad world music artists and, eventually, some of the States’ more avant-garde noisemakers, including young up-and-comers like Javelin, Delicate Steve, and The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt, who stop by the Biko Co-op Garage this Friday, March 23.
Founded in 2007 in New York City, The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt (TPDR) is a curious mix of frenzied synth beats, propulsive brass interludes, big group sing alongs, and frontman Neil Fridd’s heart-on-your-sleeve lyricism. More importantly, though, they sound like a party at the height of its run, joyous, boisterous, and teetering on out-of-control. Like Byrne himself, TPDR’s quirky and high-energy mish-mash of musical styles deserves — no, demands to be caught live. Floating somewhere between the worlds of “rock show” and “live theater act,” TPDR’s sets are a hot, sweaty, and interactive experience unlike anything else. The bandmembers, whose quantity and instruments fluctuate with each show, come equipped with all manner of costumes and props. Better still, they shun that whole audience-performer partition thing. If you’re down to dance, you’ll be doing so with the band at your side. Want to sing along? Well, don’t be surprised if you get handed the mike and asked to step in. And if you’re more inclined to stand back and take it all in, there’s plenty of eye candy for you, too. Think strobe lights, glitter bombs, and streamer-filled Conga lines.
And while all the extra bells and whistles may sound like overkill, in action they’re only one part of TPDR’s dazzling whole. Fridd’s emo-tinged songs about lost love, big hopes, and new beginnings are about as wide-eyed and earnest as they come. And paired with a live show that looks like a bomb went off in a party supply store, the effect is downright magical. The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt plays the Biko Co-op Garage (6612 Sueno Rd., Isla Vista) on Friday, March 23 with Netherfriends, Dimples, and Mothras at 8 p.m. Visit sbdiy.org for info.
NEW FRIENDS, FAMILIAR FACES: Also this week, longtime Santa Barbaran (and current NorCal-er) Grover Anderson returns to town for a show with Josh Damigo and Descendants of Prospectors. Since leaving S.B. for his hometown of Murphys, CA, Anderson’s songbook has blossomed from promising to something truly worth keeping an eye on. With a honeyed voice and narrative approach to lyric writing, Anderson’s repertoire is filled with catchy, but not over-adorned folk pop offerings. (Think Mason Jennings, minus the backing band and production tricks.) Acquaint, or reacquaint yourself this Tuesday, March 27, at SOhO (1221 State St.) at 8 p.m. Call 962-7776 or visit sohosb.com for details.
AND THERE’S MORE: Additional concert highlights this week include The Mutineers, who play Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co. (45 Industrial Wy., Buellton) on Sunday, March 25 at 6:30 p.m. Call 694-2252 for details. Seedless and Fortunate Youth team up for a night of reggae on Sunday, March 25 at SOhO. The show starts at 8 p.m. Visit clubmercy.com for tickets. And on Tuesday, March 27, Numbskull and New Noise present No Use for a Name frontman Tony Sly in a solo acoustic set at Velvet Jones at 8 p.m. Visit newnoisesb.com for info.