By Aaron Calvin, Entertainment Editor
The Knitting Factory of Brooklyn played host Monday night at what was billed as "The Rock and Popcorn Local Showcase," a chance to hear some of the local talent. And like the city itself, the turnout was an amalgamation of different sounds, made by people from different walks of life.
Due to scheduling conflicts, the opening artist, laid-back songwriter Peter Barr, was narrowly missed. The following band, Nova Columbo proceeded to take the stage with their own flamboyant brand of music. The music was light and inoffensive, but the energy and technical ability of the band was admirable. Between the guitarist and lead vocalist, there was enough movement, at times a bit superfluous, to make the audience smile and even dance.
Following Nova Columbo were The Chatty Cathys. Comprised mainly of college students, their sound can best be described as classic rock with modern inflection. Despite a bit of occasional tepidness, the band displayed skill in both songwriting and technical ability with yelping vocals overlaying rollicking bass and gleaming Fender tones.
The final act of the night, in keeping with the theme of variety, was the flamenco guitarist Hernan Romero. Accompanied by a vocalist and basis, Romero put on a truly admirable show, combining beautiful Spanish vocals with virtuosic guitar work. One half of the audience stood at rapt attention while the other danced.
"The Rock and Popcorn Local Showcase" displayed a glimpse of the diverse local talent effectively. In a city that functions a worldwide destination for musical acts, a local showcase is hard to come by but serves a valuable cultural function. The only complaint I would offer is that there was really no popcorn to be found.