Photography: Sophie Mitrokostas
Since Nov. 8, it has been impossible to have a decent conversation.
Donald Trump is now President-Elect Donald Trump, and it appears that is all anybody wishes to talk about. This is not to say that conversations about this man should not happen. However, this is to say that conversations about this man have grown tired, as had I.
And when I entered Firecreek Coffee, an Americano sounded nice but a beer sounded better.
But I was a journalist, damn it. A professional. I would wait at least one set.
I made my way through the cave-like interior of the shop, beyond coffee drinkers playing chess and beer drinkers shooting shit, toward the stage where Jelena Gonzalez and Steven Camacho of Egg Princess were playing their set.
Egg Princess. A band whose name amused me as much as their Facebook page where, under the Personal Interests description, it says: Anime, Drugs, Nihilism, Crackers and Snacks.
“That’s my friend,” said BrittniNeugart, a staff writer for KJACK. She pointed at Gonzalez on stage, strumming her bright red guitar underneath the bright lights that shone upon the bright glitter on her face. “She’s the Egg Princess.”
Egg Princess were fun. Their sound had traces of the Cranberries and Amanda Palmer, and it made people comfortable with removing themselves from the dustycouches and crooked chairs of Firecreek. By the end of their set, groups of people, like gaggles of geese, started to swallow the stage.
False North was next and people shuffled around trying to get closer to the stage for the band or to the bar for a drink. The band had formed in 2013 and their set consisted of songs from their album “Burning Fast”, as well as new material and covers.
Arlette Barajas, my manager at KJACK approached me with flying deuces and a great big smile on her face.“This sounds like The Strokes,” she said.
No more than a couple seconds after saying it, as if some cosmic force had propelled this moment into existence, False North started playing “You Only Live Once” by The Strokes, a fact I only know because of a guy with a backwards baseball cap who saw me struggling to find the Shazam app on my phone.
Finally, Four Cornered Room was up. Guitarist and vocalist Jordan Butler took to the stage in his Mothers on Invention t-shirt and thanked the crowd who, at this point, were feeling proper and tipsy enough to dance. They took little time to set up and went right into playing “Get Up” from their self-titled LP, a funky and psychedelic debut.
“This is for you guys,” said Butler. “We’re just a bunch of bums who like to play music.”
That fact was apparent, and perhaps the most enjoyable part of watching Four Cornered Room live is seeing them truly enjoy themselves.
Listening to a live performance and a studio album are vastly different experiences, but Four Cornered Room’s LP keeps that live performance element. All the songs were, mostly, live tracked.“We’re a live band so we just wanted to record [the LP] that way,” said Butler.
Live and on stage is where Four Cornered Room surf, and they ride that groovy wave as long possible. Their set went late and when it eventually ended, the lights came back on the band handed out copies of their LP.
I saw my roommate drenched in sweat, grinning to his ears. I saw classmates and coworkers, friends and people I see around town, exhausted but renewed. And it was wonderful, even for just a moment, to see people pay no mind to politics, to dance and sing and smile.
We stood outside smoking our cigarettes, letting the smoke from our mouths and the steam from our bodies rise and fall away into the cold and starry night.
The ringing in our ears sang a boastful tuneand politics would have to wait another day.