It was finally raining in Los Angeles on Sunday, which was something I think a lot of us thought would never happen (even though it is mid November). I drove into the Arts District of Downtown LA, which is home to yet another hip ass region – similar to Silver Lake and La Brea. I especially love the arts district for its clever use of space, great bars, and fine dining options. Last night was my first time wandering into the Resident, which was a stellar situation. Everything felt very low key and the people were all friendly and cozy. I was chilling out next to a fire pit while rain drizzled around me waiting for doors.
Around 9pm Dante Elephante took the stage and everyone huddled around to listen. This pop/rock group was immediately very lively and had vibes that matched the floral tree prints lead singer Ruben Zarate was rocking on his shirt. His voice carried over the guitars nicely and in between songs he interacted with the intimate crowd and showed us his cool dance moves. Seeing that they are from Santa Barbara was interesting because the band had some real Los Angeles vibes and at one point I thought that I heard Ruben say they were from around town. No worries though, because I’m sure now they are welcomed back to every venue around when they play. A personal favorite song happened when he said, “This song is called Jalisco” – a single from their most recent release with Lolipop Records called Anglo Saxon Summer. Their subtle indie rock sounds were accepted by the crowd and they went on to play a lengthy yet beautiful sounding set.
The Orwells were a group I had been looking forward to seeing live since getting word that they were going to be in LA. “Buddy” and “The Righteous One” get me through my long commutes and make me feel like a cool kid. If you look them up on Spotify some of the related artists include FIDLAR, Black Lips, and Wavves – who all draw influence from garage punk DIY sounds. Most famous for their single “Who Needs You,” The Orwells have strong production sounds found in their most recent releases. I was surprised to hear them live, thinking they would sound more ramped up and thrashy, when really they kept things pretty mellow and sounded more indie than their punk counterparts. They would probably do much better with more space for lead singer Mario Cuomo to roam around. D efinitely different than what you would find at a FIDLAR show but they have their own style that creeps up on you and makes you groove. Overall it was a packed sold out show in a really cool space, which is most often a great time. As I left I posed under the really cool “Kicking – Screaming” sign and headed back into the rain.