Thursday, November 26, 2009

Field Music is game for Bell House b’day bash

By Meredith Deliso

Seeing your favorite band for your birthday is a fortuitous experience of timing for the average concert goer. For the booker of a New York City venue, it can be just the same thing.

This December 3, Jack “Skippy” McFadden, the booker for the Bell House in Gowanus, has conjured up a line-up of hard-to-see acts and rare New York appearances that’s the stuff of dreams for die-hard music fans, and also years in the making.

Each year, a show is deemed his birthday bash (last year it was Loney Dear, Takka Takka and Alina Simone at Union Hall, which he also books). While his birthday isn’t until December 17, when he’ll turn the “improbable 41,” “sometimes you have to co-opt another date to make magic happen,” says McFadden.

Indeed, the bill is a confluence of good timing and years of urging that brought the lineup together.Coming all the way from England, headliners Field Music (pictured), a quartet anchored around brothers David and Peter Brewis, is on the road these next few months, giving a preview of their forthcoming third album, “Field Music (The Measure).”

The two took some time apart a couple years ago to pursue other projects (for David, School of Language; Peter, The Week That Was). Back as Field Music, the Brooklyn show will be only one of two U.S. dates for them, out here at the behest of McFadden.

“I’ve been bugging the agents for Field Music for a really long time to play a show,” says McFadden. “They are absolutely one of the most underrated bands out there. They make gorgeous records and it’s a rare treat to see them live.”

It’s a treat for the band as well to be coming to Brooklyn.

“For us, it’s a great opportunity to come back to New York and remind people that we still exist,” says David. “Plus, we’ve never played in Brooklyn or had a chance to look around, so I’m intrigued as to how the atmosphere and audience will be different from a Manhattan show. If it’s anything like the difference between a north or south London show, it’ll be interesting!”

McFadden also talked Pulsars, a ‘90s synth pop act, into coming together just for the Brooklyn show. Sidelined while making their sophomore album, the band, another brother duo (Dave and Harry Trumfio), now records under the name Our Future. Back in the day, Dave used to produce bands on McFadden’s label, March.

“We found we have the same affinity for some obscure new wave bands like Silicon Teens. I tried to talk my way into being in his band, but he and his brother ended up being perfect together,” says McFadden. “I’m honored they are flying in from L.A. to play for everyone.”

As far as the curious item listed as Rumours on the bill, McFadden says it’s a total surprise that won’t disappoint, and won’t happen again. Confirmed for the bill is a fourth band — the Baltimore-based indie folk duo Wye Oak, which provides another great live act for the night.

“It’s such a strong lineup. Not one of those bands could headline the Bell House, but with them all together on one show, I feel like it’s going to be a really special night,” says McFadden. “This lineup…was probably years in the making, and only for a special occasion. Like Christmas coming early.”

Or, your birthday.

Field Music play the Bell House Dec. 3 at 7:30. With Pulsars and Wye Oak. Tickets are $12. The Bell House is located at 149 7th St. For more information, call 718-643-6510.


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