K-Holes at Secret Project Robot
When you get a bunch of veteran musicians together strange things can happen. K-Holes started out doing everything from really messy punk to moody psychedelia to jazzy Mothers of Invention-esque freakouts. Some of it worked, some of it really didn't, but it definitely felt like more like individual musicians writing individual songs which suited them. Bands which work like that tend to fall apart.
Given that K-Holes have survived and put out two albums they obviously achieved some level of stylistic integration. These days if you don't listen too closely K-Holes could even pass for a rock band. They're loud and energetic enough and do have a bit of that rock attitude on stage. Yet their music is so moody. Now moody normally implies mopey or gothic, and they do go there once in a while on songs like "Window in the Wall", but normally the mood is more panicky and paranoid. It's a nervy, high-energy moodiness. In particular the sax adds a little bit of chaos, not enough to throw things out of whack, just enough to make things feel a little bit off. And if some of those lyrics seem a bit disturbing... I think that's probably the idea. It is quite intense and works so much better than when they started out, which is probably true of every band ever but moreso than usual in this case.
The stage in the garden of Secret Project Robot didn't look that small but dang it sure was crowded with band members. Every time I tried to isolate one person there would be an elbow, a leg, some part of someone else in each shot. And the smoke! Yes, it was a sunny Spring day in Bushwick and yet somehow I was reminded of a small club atmosphere. Great sound though.