Pinback Live at the Fillmore

Pinback’s repetitious building harmonies have stayed with me several days after seeing the band live. With driving force and a straight-forward stage presence, the band rocked a full house at the Fillmore SF last Sunday night. Although, I was tired from a long day hiking in the Northern California sun, Zach, Rob, and company managed to reach me after half a set. It was in the bathroom, actually, where I could hear their fantastic vocal harmonies stripped of the textured guitar/bass riffs. Yup - some of the most harmonizing around. Overall, the night brought all the expected layered pop hooks, but I found it took several days to reveal itself to me in its full complexity.

A couple criticisms though, Pinback is pretty staid on stage. Rob stays head down for most of the performance and Zach moved only occasionally to take a hit off a Guinness bottle. The audience mirrored the lack of motion, maintaining only the obligatory indie head bob (often in time to the music). Pinback also tends to play their material straight off the album (though, they did speed up “Fortress” and add some vocal textures here and there).

Whatever their performance issues, their music sticks with you, growing in unexpected ways.

Listen to these similar artists:

Rilo Kiley

The Shins

Rob Crow

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