June 25, 2010
Beach Pit BBQ
This will teach me to make assumptions. Though they're alumni of the ultra-selective UC Berkeley, the NorCal indie-pop duo Camp Out
play music that is unexpectedly modest. Formed in 2007, the band is comprised of singer/guitarist Maddy Hanks, and keyboardist/singer/percussionist Jackie Law.
Featuring the sonic optimism and pop sensibilities of Kim Deal's post-Pixies project the Breeders, Camp Out has embarked on a musical
project infused with various drum loops and synthesizers. Currently the
twosome are wandering around the West Coast in support of their 2010 debut
They appeared Friday night at an all-ages show at
Tustin's Beach Pit and BBQ. The 40-minute set illustrated the point
that just because a band has the resources to record a good record
doesn't mean they can play well.
If you give Closer
a spin, one song in
particular stands out: The uber catchy "Car Crash." With it's anthemic
hook and impassioned lyrics sung in rounds, this one is a winner. The
band played it toward the end of their set, but sadly, in a live
setting, singer Hanks has a meek voice that is all throat and no
diaphragm. Sounding like a nervous teenager, Hanks' vocals were
accompanied by her revving electric guitar, which might as well have
been played through a drive-through speaker box. The show's one saving
grace was drummer Jackie Law's multi-tasking stage-craft. The
ambidextrous percussionist would deftly switch between only drumming to
drumming with one hand while simultaneously playing keyboard or
operating her laptop. The rest of the set isn't worth discussing.
crowd: A few tables of college-age hipsters who would occasionally
shimmy to the music or mouth the words. The venue was primarily filled
with dining families.
Overheard: "Can I
get a pulled pork sandwich?"
I'm a sucker for a good live act. These girls have the potential to be
one. They just need to develop their performance their skills bring the
show up to speed with to their other resources.
1. Make Myself Sick
2. Does it Hurt?
5. Flying Back
7. Car Crash