A of good vibes and SHAKE-ing
The M train braked on wet tracks, shooting the light from its train cars into the small hole-in-the-wall second floor venue of Market Hotel. Every train that passed gave me a glimpse of the crowd around me: a mix of twenty-somethings – the majority wearing denim, slowly head-bobbing or screaming the lyrics to the electronic musings of Montreal-based musician Peter Sagar’s musical project, HOMESHAKE. With the small space’s open concept, the room filled with lead singer Sagar’s brassy guitar riffs and echoing synths.
HOMESHAKE is on tour for their 2017 album “Fresh Air,” stopping in Washington D.C. and Philadelphia following the four shows at Brooklyn’s Market Hotel. Tuesday, Feb. 20, the first night of their residency, was opened by Greatest Champion Alive, an indie rock band based in Brooklyn. It was their first show ever as a group, and their songs were repeatedly met with applause from the crowd.
Brooklyn-based band True Blue opened up Wednesday night, Feb. 21. Kari Faux, from Little Rock, Arkansas, brought her raps about internet fame and being “the shit” on Thursday. She also twerked to the entirety of “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani – to the crowd’s delight.
Originally scheduled for Friday’s show was Un Blonde, an indie artist who ultimately had to drop out of the set. KeithCharles, a rapper from the Atlanta-based label Awful Records, was the last-minute opener for the Friday performance. He brought fast-paced originals and creative beats to the audience and set the mood for the start of HOMESHAKE’s set.
Taking the stage, Sagar grabbed a Sharpie and sheet of paper, knelt down and began to write the set list, chatting with those in the front row. A relatively quiet front man, Sagar talked with his voice going through an octavizer. “If I don’t talk much, don’t take it personally,” Sagar said with a laugh. He smiled at his sold-out audience, “We are going to play eighteen songs in a row and then the transaction will be complete.”
The band performed well-renowned tracks from “Fresh Air” such as, “Every Single Thing,” “Call Me Up” and “Khmlwugh.” Also included in the setlist were fan-favorites from the 2015 album Midnight Snack; “Heat,” “Give it to Me” and “Faded.” To much applause, Sagar also added numbers from his 2014 debut “In the Shower”; “Making a Fool of You,” “She Can’t Leave Me Here Alone Tonight” and the entirely instrumental, jazz-infused “Michael.”
The feeling of the crowd was best seen when one man turned to a rowdy group of girls behind and asked, “Can you please settle down? I’m tryna vibe.”
This caused the crowd to stir and mock him, “Oh he’s tryna vibe” or “Is that guy vibing yet?” Half of us wanted to vibe, and half of us wanted to shout and shake off our stress. The music of HOMESHAKE is dynamic in a way that it allows both of these types of people to enjoy the same concert.
After the night filled with sing-alongs and dance moves performed in the shadows of subway lights, Sagar addressed the audience, “That was the last song. The transaction is complete. Thank you all for coming.”