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Dead Sara at El Cid 3/9/17. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Dead Sara at El Cid 3/9/17. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.

Back in March, Dead Sara-  one of my favorite Los Angeles based rock bands- played a month long residency at El Cid,  a tiny Silver Lake venue (capacity 125) which is known more for its tapas and flamenco shows than hard hitting, visceral rock shows. It’s been a while since they’ve released their last full length album, “Pleasure to Meet You”, the band used this opportunity to showcase a handful new tunes and remind the fans how kick-ass their live show it.

Rabid “Deadicated”- a group of fans who religious follow the band- consistently showed up early, en masse, to get a taste of the new offerings that they have been working on, and Dead Sara did not disappoint. With Emily Armstrong drawing the listener in with her powerful vocal performance, Siouxsie Medley, with her quiet intensity, shredding her lead guitar lines and Sean Friday smashing his drum kit with a wild abandon, it was everything that we Deadicated have come to enjoy and expect. I did notice, however, that original bassist Chris Null was not playing with the band at the gig that I went too. Though unconfirmed, sources have suggested that he may have permanently left the group to pursue other endeavors playing with Mondo Cozmo. I don’t know who the new bassist is, and though he may not possess the same kind of charisma on stage that Chris had, his playing fit in perfectly with the sonics of the evening.

With a new player, and new songs, it felt like a new beginning for the band; a reboot. Before they took the stage, the Robert Johnson classic “I Believe I’ll Dust My Broom” played through the speakers. The song may have gone unnoticed to the rest of the room, but but I heard that soulful voice essentially singing about starting over, moving on and finding home. The message wasn’t lost on me.

Dead Sara kicked off their performance with two new cuts: “Losing My Cool” and “Fuck Ur Rock” (see a photo of the setlist int he gallery bellow). From there, the roared into their older repertoire with rockers “Monumental Holiday”, “Lemon Scent” and “Mona Lisa”. They then performed a series of new cuts which included as “Kane” (a reference to the co-writer of the track), “Remember” and “Unamerican” (which is a banger of a song which will surely garner them some serious attention).

But perhaps the most memorable, and poignant, moment of the evening was when they concluded their performance with their biggest hit, “Weatherman”. Midway through the song, the tempo and dynamics seamlessly transitions to allow Ms. Armstong to sing a somberly intense, a capella version of the “Star Spangled Banner” to the audience. The audience’s focus on the emotions on her face and in her voice was so intense that you could hear a pin drop. Then, on the drop of a dime, the band picked up the tempo and volume to bring Weatherman back to its origins, having everyone transition from solemn respect to unrelenting head banging. That was amazing. That was rock and roll.

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