When Locally Amped caught band-of-the-internet-minute Sylvan Esso this past Thursday, we were wooed there mostly by the electro folk wanderings of singles "Play It Right" and "Hey Mami." Within the sold out walls of The Westway, a former strip club in NYC's West Village, the duo swiftly powered through their debut self-titled album (out today). As beats reigned foremost at the monthly electro club night sponsored by Neon Gold, we only wished singer Amelia Meath had more center stage gusto.
We first heard whisperings of the Sylvan Esso, the indie supergroup of Meath (Mountain Man) and electronic producer Nick Sanborn (Megafaun), right before SXSW. Meath exercises her seductive voice throughout their tracks, connecting with Sanborn's always quivering bassline. The duo mesh best when jumping between Meath acapella and the singer grooving alongside her counterpart's laptop beatmaking.
Last week's appearance was their fifth in New York, although their sincere remarks of gratitude towards the end of the night made it seem like their first. Signed to Partisan Records (The Dismemberment Plan, PHOX) back in January, the Durham, NC-based act begins a 22 date tour opening for experimental pop favorites tune-yards tomorrow. By the time they return to the Northeast (6/16 in Boston at Royale, 6/22 - 23 in New York at Webster Hall), we hope Meath will take some tips from Merrill Garbus, tune-yards' always enthusiastically quirky frontgal.
Or maybe we just weren't close enough to the stage? We'll let you know next month. In the meantime, take "Play It Right" for a spin.
This column is part of a Metro Boston and Metro New York music feature called Locally Amped. Follow us on Twitter @Locally Amped and on Facebook at Locally Amped.