Lemon Sun - "Same Old Ground"
May 9, 2009
We set up on the second floor of a rundown craftsman somewhere in Silver Lake, or maybe Echo Park. It was Rob's sister's place, which she had been kind enough to let them take over for the afternoon. Up a narrow staircase littered with clothes, shoeboxes, a broken telecaster, and into the living room, you could barely find room to stand, let alone maneuver amongst the guitars, furniture, antique lamps, mixing boards, amps. Somehow we managed to fit everyone, the drum set, a couple amps, microphones, and cameras.
It was heading toward being a blistering Saturday afternoon, the way the heat tends to collect itself in the Northeast corner of the city. We sat out on the balcony, drank some wine, shot the shit. The lineup for Lemon Sun has changed a bit since their inception (or should I say, entirely sans frontman Rob Kolar). But Kolar has managed to surround himself with a solid lineup of talented musicians (Pipe on drums, Mark on trumpet, Patrick on guitar, and Scott on bass), who, hanging around them, you would think to be lifelong friends. Some technical difficulties (the Fender Twin was picking up a Mexican radio station) had slowed everyone down a bit. After running to the nearest Radio Shack to try and get a cable for an old amp they had lying around, and that proving ineffective, we just decided to roll with it.
I had been out to see them play to a packed house at Spaceland a week or two beforehand, where they had a guest tap dancer, played a Bowie cover, and threw out egg shakers to the audience for the perennial crowd-pleaser, "Same Old Ground." Their live sets are always an occasion, and never fall short of the ridiculously catchy indie-rock anthems of the albums. So honestly, when they sat down to play, I didn't know what to expect. But these guys are true to form rockers, and the immediacy of the songs, that infectious charm, the soulful lyrics, the head-bobbing melodies; nothing was lost. These are folkier renditions of the songs than the album versions, which serve the songwriting perfectly. That sense of a little 60's-jangle. Five talented musicians, messing around with songs they know like the back of their hands. All smiles.
They played three songs that day, the last one just Rob and his guitar.
Find out more about Lemon Sun @ myspace.com/lemonsun
Camera: Elliot Glass
Sound: Elliot Glass
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