#9: FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE
Claire Gallagher's review of Florence and the Machine at LA's Wiltern Theater inspired many readers to tell her that she made them feel like they were there:
You’re on the floor with the masses and you’re starting to sweat. The place is packed and you’re surrounded by floral-clad girls and bespectacled boys. You tune out the dull murmur of one thousand giddy conversations and watch the endless ads played on a screen in front of the thick, red, velvet curtain, unsure of what to expect or when to expect it. Then suddenly the lights dim and the crowd roars and next thing you know you’re being sucker punched in the stomach by the most powerful bass drum you’ve never heard. And as the curtain slowly comes apart a sleek figure emerges, backlit with a drumstick in her hand and beating a standing drum by her side. And you recognize the first song--"Drumming Song" (fittingly)--and you scream. Loud.
#8: AUSTIN CITY LIMITS
Lacey Lewis was at Austin City Limits, and she took time to chat with GAYNGS at an after-show. Here's an excerpt from her review that preceded the interview:
The set change was just as epic as Stickney’s drum solo since GAYNGS is a huge ensemble, but it was well worth the wait. I enjoyed picking out the members I had seen in their videos as they set up their gear. When the lights went down and the “Bands Only” door closed we knew it was time. GAYNGS mobbed the stage in their fedora, Eskimo hat, button-down, vest, bow tie, colorful shades, and dino-hoodie wearing glory, many lighting up cigs and popping open beers in preparation (I saw that they discovered Lone Star, Austin‘s favorite cheap beer). The show began with an auto-toned intro from a old, bearded, slightly haggard looking guy whom they announced as Mr. Max Blevins, the newest GAYNGSter. I couldn’t find anything about him on their site, so I’m thinking they just saw him on the street, liked his beard, and asked him to start the show.
#7: SALLIE FORD & THE SOUND OUTSIDE
We didn't get a chance to cover Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside on the site in 2010, but you can look forward to seeing them in 2011. Here's a taste of what got them voted to the Top Ten list:
#6: SUFJAN STEVENS
Lauren Novik used Sufjan Stevens' show in LA this October as an opportunity to test out Live Tweeting, one of the things we hope to bring you a lot more of in 2011. She said:
So, sometimes life gets in the way of- life- and since they have yet to perfect cloning the whole being in two places at once thing is next to impossible! So, you might miss a concert or two, and if you find yourself anywhere other than the Wiltern tonight for the much talked about and highly anticipated Sufjan Stevens concert, never fear- BNB.com is here! We'll be live tweeting from Wilshire and Western and keeping you updated on the latest and greatest happening at the venue in real time! So follow us @bestnewbandscom and check out what's going down when we get up close with Sufjan Stevens!
#5: THE TALLEST MAN ON EARTH
Kelly Montgomery caught The Tallest Man on Earth at Musicfest Northwest this September, and he wowed her:
The Doug Fir was the perfect intimate venue for the simple, powerful songs that Matsson sings alone with his guitar. His distinctive voice and earnest songwriting hushed most of the crowd (with the exception of a few, it was late after all) into peaceful admiration for most of the set. Though all his favorites were hits with the crowd ("The Wild Hunt," "King of Spain," and "The Gardener"), the best moments of the show came when Matsson played songs from his just-released EP Sometimes The Blues is Just a Passing Bird.
#4: VOLCANOLESS IN CANADA
Volcanoless in Canada makes their BestNewBands.com debut with their nomination and selection for the Top Ten Live Shows of 2010. Here's a taste of what got them noticed:
#3: SLEIGH BELLS
Todd Prodanovich was the first one to share Sleigh Bells with us, and since then they've made a number of appearances since. Here's the first playlist they appeared on:
"Have a heart, have a heart, have a heart, sixteen six six six like the pentagon.” A melodic tune alluding to teen angst and Satan? Yes, please. This song takes a sunny acoustic melody with soft vocals that may or may not mask something more sinister. Either way the song is amazing, and a rare treat in an album better known for its intense blasts of distorted guitar and slapping bass. I must thank Morgan for letting me know that the whole album is good and that I don’t need to just play the first three songs over and over.
Lauren Novik caught FUN. at The Music Box in LA, and they made a great impression:
Sometimes the pursuit of good music – and I mean GOOD music means you have to be ready to fight for it. I’m not talking Jersey Shore style knock down drag out nonsense- I’m talking planning, scheming, and analyzing the fastest route to get from point A to desired musical destination. Last night’s battle to the Music Box in Hollywood was up there as pretty epic. It tested my patience, it tested my driving ability, and it reminded me to never, ever, at any cost drive down Santa Monica Boulevard- which has conveniently been cut down to one lane in some areas. So in a post gridlock haze I wandered into the Music Box, which was as jampacked as the street I’d just escaped and made my way to the front of the stage amxiously awaiting to be serenaded slowly by each track on Aim and Ignite- and more than willing to engage in a little fun.
#1: BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE
Cervante Pope has caught Broken Social Scene a couple of times this year, once at the Wiltern. Here's a taste of her review:
"Lover's Spit," "Almost Crimes" and my personal favorite "Hotel" were all on the set list that night. I jumped out of my seat and didn't sit back down until the drive home. I tried to get good video of the performance but my dancing and singing prevented that from happening.
Read the rest HERE and look for her profile on the band this Saturday!