School of Seven Bells SFO>SEA

I love that Paige and I get to see the same shows but in different cities.  She photographs them in San Francisco and I review them in Seattle.  As is the case here, sometimes we agree on how great a show is.  Others, like Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti get us talking about how bands can be so different just a day or two later.  By the way, I was all about Ariel Pink, Paige was dubious about their live antics.

School of Seven Bells were pretty great here, and although Paige wasn’t as blown away as she was by their previous tour, she really enjoyed them.  In a way, I have a similar, but small gripe.  I was warning all my friends to bring earplugs because last year in Seattle, they were My Bloody Valentine loud.  I’m not overstating this – I’ve seen MBV on every tour that they’ve played here.  Yes, even back in late 80’s when their shows were so loud, you’d have to be an animal to hear their songs through all the fucked up frequencies.  This time around, School of Seven Bells were still loud, but not whacked out crazy loud like I was kind of hoping they’d be.  But boy was it gorgeous, especially the newer material with perhaps “Bye Bye Bye” being the highlight of the set for me.

What Paige was blown away by was the bright lighting. SVIIB, like many bands of their introverted shoegazer ilk, usually play in almost complete darkness. It was a great treat to photograph them under very reasonable lighting at The Independent.

Our only regret? It turns out this was one of the very last performances with both Deheza twins. It was announced two days after the San Francisco show that Claudia Deheza had left the band for personal reasons.

View the full School of Seven Bells @ The Independent photoset on Flickr:
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