Wearing a suit for the occasion, Christopher Owens (formerly of Girls), premiered his debut solo album “Lysandre” at New York’s Bowery Ballroom on January 21, 2013. His 7 piece band includes a flutist and it gives his songs a medieval vibe to them. Beginning with the instrumental “Lysandre’s Theme,” Christopher Owens said very little to the audience (aside from an occasional “thank you” after songs) and let the music speak for itself.
Christopher Owens and his band
The songs on “Lysandre” are all quite short and like you’d hear on a Girls album, some songs are quite slow, but there are also a few upbeat rockers and the theme of heartbreak is featured prominently. Songs like “Love is in the Ear of the Listener” sounded like it could fit in on an episode of Sesame Street and there were several love songs featuring New York as their locale. “Lysander’s Theme” (on flute) was featured towards the end of many of the songs and it gave the set a nice cohesive feel to it.
Christopher Owens also covered “The Boxer” by Simon and Garfunkel and it fit in perfectly with the rest of the songs. If you missed Christopher Owens’ last night at Bowery Ballroom, you are in luck – he’s also playing tonight (January 22, 2013) and if you are willing to brave the 10 degree weather, you will see a great show.
“California Song” by Hedi Slimane. Now showing at MOCA in Los Angeles through January 22, 2012
Los Angeles! Make sure you check out “California Song” by Hedi Slimane at MOCA. The exhibit focuses on the period where Slimane spent in California, photographing architecture and rock stars. Featured prominently in the exhibit is Christopher Owens from the band Girls, whose album “Father, Son, Holy Ghost” was one of my favorite albums of 2011. On the ground floor are black and white photos laid out in a similar manner as you see above and on the top floor, Slimane’s photos are projected onto 3 sides of a cube that change every few seconds. It looks really cool in person!
Christopher Owens (left)
MOCA is located at 8687 Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood. “California Song” by Hedi Slimane runs until January 22, 2011. Don’t miss it!
The other night when I saw Girls in concert, I didn’t know what to expect. Their new album “Father, Son, Holy Ghost” is burning up the internet with great buzz, but I like to find out for myself before I believe what I read. From the second San Francisco’s Girls hit the stage until the moment they exited, my jaw dropped open in amazement. The album scored a place in my best albums of 2011 on my first listen. Their music is epic. Spanning genres from Surf music to gorgeous ballads to punk rock, Girls know how it’s done. The song you are about to see, “Vomit” instantly became one of my favorite songs of 2011 the first time I heard it. I challenge you to listen to this song and not fall head over heels in love. When you hear the end of the song with lead singer Christopher Owens singing “come into my heart,” you might need to get the Kleenex because you probably won’t hear that much emotion and vulnerability again in 2011. The backup singers harmonizing with him at the end of the song are powerful enough to make Pink Floyd tip their hats. Please note, when I uploaded the video, it seemed to have cropped the top of the screen, so apologies for that. The music should make up for it. Girls are amazing. Spread the word!
If you want to take bets on an album that is sure to wind up on a lot of year end best lists, I think it’s safe to say you’ll be seeing “Father, Son, Holy Ghost” by Girls making these lists. The San Francisco based band played their first of two sold out shows at New York’s Bowery Ballroom on September 22, 2011. The show began at 9 pm with great sets from Papa (of which the lead singer – who is also the drummer – and guitarist are also in Girls) and punk band Nobunny at 10 pm. Girls hit the stage just around 11 pm. If you haven’t heard Girls before, their music has elements of surf rock, folk and pop. Their songs are extremely catchy even though they have titles like “Vomit” and “Die.” Lead singer Christopher Owens looks like a cross between Macauley Culkin and Kurt Cobain. His voice is mellow and his lyrics are great.
The audience loved every second of the nearly 2 hour show and it’s clear when the band comes back through town, they’ll be playing at much larger venues. I spoke with lead singer Christopher Owens backstage after the show and he was extremely cool. He was pretty shy, as one would expect from the gorgeous yet sad lyrics he writes. Before the night was over, I was at the merch table getting both of their albums and Girls’ EP. I am looking forward to getting to know their music better and I think if you give them a shot, you will too.
See the set list as well as a photo of Christopher Owens and myself after the jump.