Sunday, May 08, 2011

Alejandro Escovedo & Jesse Malin Rock Maxwell's

Alejandro Escovedo playing at Maxwell's Friday night.
For a great rock show with veteran musicians playing in a small venue, you couldn't do much better than Friday night's show at Maxwell's in Hoboken. On the bill were Jesse Malin and the St. Marks Social and Alejandro Escovedo and the Sensitive Boys, two bands led by men who have gone from punk rock to singer-songwriters with an edge. Both are artists who I've seen at Maxwell's before.

Malin, who was in the punk band D Generation in the 1990s, has been headlining shows for some time, and his new band St. Marks Social sounds great. To see them as the opener for a talent like Escovedo is a real treat. Escovedo's punk pedigree goes back to the 1970s in San Francisco with bands like the Nuns and Rank and File; he began his solo career (which now includes 10 albums) in 1992.

David Pulkingham and Alejandro Escovedo.
Even before he began his solo work Escovedo has blended styles including punk, folk, and country, and he continues to mix things up — perhaps not surprising, since he grew up in a musical family and has lived in places ranging from Texas and California to New York and back to Texas. I last saw Alejandro Escovedo several years ago when his album 2006 "The Boxing Mirror" came out, which featured a string section.

His current band includes drummer Hector Munez (who has been with him 28 years, Escovedo said) and guitarist David Pulkingham, both of whom play on his latest album, "Street Songs of Love."

Escovedo and the Sensitive Boys played songs from throughout his career, including "Castanets," "Down in the Bowery," "Five Hearts Breaking," "Always a Friend," and "Pissed Off 2 a.m."

Jesse Malin and Alejandro Escovedo sharing vocals during an encore.
After Escovedo's set Jesse Malin and his band returned to the stage and the two bands performed a short encore set of covers, including Whiskeytown's "Excuse Me While I Break My Own Heart Tonight," Johnny Thunders' "You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory," and the Rolling Stones' "Miss You."

This was a great chance to see two great artists on one bill, and Maxwell's has some more well-regarded acts playing in its intimate confines: NRBQ on June 10th, James McMurtry on June 17th, The Feelies on July 1st and 2nd, and Fountains of Wayne on July 21st and 22nd. See the Maxwell's website for links to tickets.

1 comment :

bonnie said...

Hi, Dave - thanks for stopping by Frogma today. Sorry you can't make it to the Blue Drinks event tonight, but you've picked a couple of good places to get involved with - I've got good friends at both the Downtown Boathouse and Hoboken Cove.

I also posted a long answer to your apartment-kayak question. Short answer could have been: Give Randay at New York Kayak a call. NY Kayak is just one of a number of really good kayak shops in the area, but he's actually in Manhattan & caters especially to urban paddlers.

OK, I'm off to get my Blue Drinks now. Hope to see you on or near the water sometime!