Summer is sadly on its final days as schools begin to reopen and weddings start to spread out. What a nice summer it has been too, not too hot at all! As for the music part of it, man, it really thrived. For example, a few weeks ago I finally was invited to the ever-popular Rockwood Music Hall to witness the music of Liz Brennan. Liz is a new artist on my world map, but she provided a show that was both entertaining and fun for an evening after work in the office.
What started off as a rainy day in NYC turned into a night of great music at Rockwood. Not sweating as much as I usually am, I wandered downtown to the concert hall. I entered via Stage One to a small yet loud crowd. There was an element of excitement among the people who were eagerly awaiting Liz and crew to rock out. Again, Stage One had the drums on the floor, which I still find amusing and intimate. The rest of the instruments were on the stage. A new piece was the addition of keyboards on the piano along with synths. There was hardly anybody at the bar as I sat on a stool and ordered a Heineken.
Liz’s band continued warming up in the background. Almost immediately, a woman representing some neat cowboy boots and comfortable attire walked on stage with a beer in hand. The music magic began. Liz’s band got into a loud and hard rocking sound. I noticed that the guitar was a bit louder than her voice when she began to sing. She was soft spoken, but her vocals somehow matched with the guitar and keys as the evening progressed. Of all the instruments, the drums were loudest of them all that night. Liz Brennan’s music is perfect for long drives on the highway. She could raise her voice to levels that were stunning, but the guitar and drums often drowned it out. With a simple hand raised and a tap of her cowboy boots, she loved her moment on stage. She could open that mouth wide! She unleashed all of her power for her audience. Her band knew their stuff and was unbelievably relaxed.
During her breaks she told the stories about the songs and the band gave her background music to go on which smoothly turned into the next tune. I liked that storytelling element of it all. Liz kept holding her beer at times while she sang easily. There was one song that reminded me of Pipeline as the night went on. Glancing out the windows, I saw punks walking by and other musicians of the night peeking in. Eventually, Liz took the mood down with strong and somber keys. Listeners could really hear her voice now, which was supported by her always-smiling face. She is a passionate singer often looking down in deep thought. There was almost a yodel of a note thrown in to some of her songs.
While she may have seemed tense, she calmly continued singing and smiling all the way. It was at this point and time where she started dancing a bit. I admired her storytelling rock ability that usually followed with a bit of of awkward laughs from both her and the audience. She finally loosened up. Her set came to a close as the Rockwood donate bucket came around. The ending songs were fast paced old school 1900s music, Songs from Boardwalk Empire and the like. There were jazzy bits thrown in there too, a kind of psycadelic Jazz. As the show came to an end, the crowd was now quite full with people smiling. A final throng of music and applause followed.
All in all, Liz Brennan was a delight to see perform. She holds her ground well and seems to enjoy the stage. I wish that more people were there to take part in her music, but I imagine it take some time to garner NYC music goers. We are a rash bunch. I have high hopes for Liz and will be looking forward to seeing her pave her stellar musical path. Give her a listen!