9/23/09

I WAS ALWAYS WITH YOU

So much to say and do. Let's see.

Saturday night was QxBxRx and I was fucking ecstatic because a) it was the first time in a long while that my friend Richert and I go-go danced together, and b) the first band of the night was none other than Tayisha Busay. Allow me to begin gushing about them.

Maybe a year ago, I was contacted by rising electropop wonderkid Brandon LaLaVek about playing shows in NYC. It was really inspiring to meet another young queer artist doing cool shit in NYC. His music was amazing and he was really sweet and genuine. His music is also amazing. He makes these really beautiful, intense, layered pop gems. In at least one of them he loops Kathleen Hanna singing "I wish I was-, wish I was-, wish I was-" into a gorgeous noise. Double extra swooncore. He booked my band Max Steele and the Party Ice (I think I might change the name of my band, to either Silvertooth or Isadora Wing-- thoughts?) to play with him and my good friend / constant source of musical and spiritual inspiration PASH(ly) at this club in Greenpoint called Europa. He had also booked another band for that night, three young beautiful ladies by the name of Tayisha Busay. Susan Pash(ly) has said that Tayisha was apparently really great, she had checked them out on MySpace. Susan has exquisite taste, is usually ahead of everyone else in this god-fearing country in terms of What Is Rad (just, when you get a sec, peep some of Susan's legendary sartorial prowess). Just before the show I found out that the girls in the band and I had a mutual friend: the Dance Darling of Downtown, Miss Joey Kipp. Anyone who is friends with Kipps Ahoy is a winner in my book. I felt instant sympatico with the Busay Ladies and I hadn't even met them yet.

My band and I showed up at the club and were summarily blown away by LaLaVek's set. I kept telling my friends that night "See? See? I told you! I fucking TOLD YOU HOW GREAT HE IS!" I could barely contain myself. The dancers and I did our stretches and got into our outfits, getting ready to perform. We schmoozed with Pash(ly) and assorted Rock Luminary Audience Members and it was a really good time.

Then Tessa, Ariel and Hope showed up.
In costume.
We (actually) gagged. As in: our mouths were stopped.
The talkiest band in NYC was speechless.

I am, or try to be, a sweet and generous person. When I'm playing shows I usualyl try to meet the other bands and strike up a convo and find common ground. When I had gathered my wits and lifted my jaw from the floor, I nervously approached Tayisha and introduced myself. They were so fucking sweet. We chatted about school and Joey and life in the city. I was bemused and curious about the band. Maybe it's my deep, dark insecurity, but when I see a Really Good Looking, Well-Dressed band I am doubtful. I figure "Well, they look good but they can't possibly deliver on all the promises that their metallic silk hoodies and neon leggings are making, can they? I think not." Without even meaning to, I pulled my Ageism card with the girls and got all matronly and wished them a good show that night. Pash(ly) did some really intense, smoldering groove-rock new songs, taking us deeper into our hearts. My band performed and we were pretty good, I thought.

Then Tayisha Busay hit the stage. It's like someone set me on fire. When I was a teenager I religiously went to puck rock shows. I went every week to 924 Gilman Street, even if I didn't know any of the bands. I was desperate and starving to see other performers and bands, got a definite thrill out of live music. I didn't smoke or drink or do drugs (well, not a lot) in high school. Music was my drug of choice. In college I stopped going to events that weren't on campus, and when I graduated I had played so many shitty shows in NYC that I wasn't really interested in going to see bands I didn't know or have some prior investment in (say, a bassist I really wanted to fuck). Seeing Tayisha Busay that night reminded me what I love about live music, what I love about New York City. Only here could you see and hear something this amazing. In addition to absolute A+ Honor Roll 4.0 GPA Correctness in terms of outfits, the girls had these incredible synchronized dance moves. My dancers and I were weeping tears of joy and inspiration. Their songs were witty, bounce-y, funny, sweet, and perfectly articulated. These girls could crack a mean joke, but they can also sang. Tayisha Busay are a real fucking party. I was an instant fan.

I played with them and LaLaVek again at Europa some months later. By this point, the girls had been regulars at various NYC venues such as Santo's Party House. They were blowing up. They arrived at the club again in costume this second night, but this time in a decidedly Uptown 1970s / Janice-Dickinson-When-She-Was-Hot / Vintage Glamourpuss effects. A vision in Black and gold. Their performance was again, seared into my mind. I think of it often. They are maybe my favorite NYC band these days.

They performed on Saturday night at QxBxRx, and now Brandon has joined the band full-time. I scored a copy of their new demo with beautifully appropriate Lisa Frank touches (which YOU KNOW I LOVE):

Their performance on Saturday night was nothing short of spectacular. The live show incorporates more live musical performance, finding Ariel, Tessa and Brandon alternating rapping verses and jamming on drums samplers keyboards and computers. They once again looked phenominal, and their new songs, clear-throated glitter anthems all, blew me away. I was there on Saturday to go-go dance in between the bands, but ten seconds into their set I was already exhausted and sweaty from dancing like the exuberant fanboy I am on the side of the stage. They performed a pitch-perfect synth-pop cover of Weezer's "Sweater Song". The girls had told me that in one of their songs I would get a shout-out, and when that part happened I fucking lost my mind.

I think that everyone should go to their myspace page and listen to the songs and buy their demo and go to all of their shows. They are perhaps the most important band happening in NYC right now, and in about five seconds they're going to be insanely famous, so check them out now before their records and concert tickets are really expensive.

I scored a copy of their new demo at the show and have been listening to it on repeat for the last few days. In one song, they do in fact sing "Sunday morning, void of Jesus Christ / When out last night with the Party Ice". I was listening to it this morning and when that line came-on I almost started crying on the L Train. What can I say? There is almost no greater compliment. I am amazed. Their demo is fucking beautiful, beautifully produced and engineered and the songs, man, are fucking phenomenal. This is the record that you should be hearing. Check out this really cool video on them:



Just giving you all the heads up. This is What Is Cool. Tayisha Busay, we love you.

1 comment:

Stay-At-Home-Dan said...

"let's play instruments!"