In between live in-studio appearances on KCRW and Seattle's KEXP, The Duke Spirit continued the trend of spectacularly great British bands playing at unbelievably small LA clubs. Beaten to the punch only a week before by British Sea Power, The Duke Spirit played to a packed Echo crowd. Rumored to be in attendance were Noel and Liam Gallagher of Oasis and members of future tour-mates, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. My friend Teresa spotted Brian Aubert from LA's most recent Silver Lake hipsters turned KROQstars, Silversun Pickups.
The Duke Spirit circumvented the round-peg-in-square-hole electrical fiasco BSP experienced the week before by renting all their equipment stateside. Taking the stage at the (surprisingly) decent hour of 10:30, the band seemed to be bursting with energy despite their long flight over.
Although, traveling musicians need to sneak z's in whenever possible. The keyboardist was spied slinking down to the floor during the songs he wasn't needed for a few brief siestas. Singer Liela Moss worked the microphone stand like she was playing a Whiskey a Go-Go show in 1987 ...but in a good way. Her vocals reminded more of Scanners then the oft compared Nico. She also takes the title of first girl to play harmonica which she whipped out between the stick banging pf Dog Roses. That swing of that song invokes images of a midnight saunter down some cobblestoned abbey on the back streets of London. Love it.
The new track, Neptune Calls (??) was my highlight of the night. It's sexy, driving rhythm has quelled any notion of a sophomore sell-out record with their upcoming Neptune release that I might have had.
Like all bands with any iota of buzz these days, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to see them return a few months from now at the El Rey...then a few months later at the Wiltern...then on and on until the industry has wrung them dry. See them now before it's too late.