Duo Burnt Palms headlines the soft grand reopening of The Lobby at the Golden State Theatre.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Drummer Clara Nieto and singer/guitarist Christina Riley never intended to form a band when they met last February, but lightening in a bottle can’t be capped forever.
“The goal wasn’t to be in a band, it was to play music and have fun,” Riley says. “It just worked out great.”
“This area doesn’t have enough young bands so we just wanted to start something in Monterey County,” Nieto adds.
Burnt Palms’ desire to help elevate local music makes them an appropriate band to debut Monterey’s newest music venue, The Lobby at the Golden State Theatre. The theatre is returning as one of the area’s premiere venues for music, thanks to a recent partnership between owner Warren Dewey and Alternative Cafe owner Scott Grover. One immediate change includes a venue-inside-a-venue – think the Atrium at the Catalyst in Santa Cruz – as the Lobby gives smaller shows the opportunity to perform at the killer venue without the pressure of filling the main theater.
The show comes a couple weeks after the duo released its first five songs online; a CD and possibly a vinyl will be available shortly. Riley describes Burnt Palms as a mix of pop and alternative smothered in garage rock.
“Sometimes there are glimpses of several types of music within one song,” she says. “We’re definitely into punchy songs rather than long songs that don’t have anything catchy. We try to write fun songs that mean something to us.”
“Rather Die” initiates a flurry of imagery encompassing teen angst, Doc Martens and flannel shirts – think mid-90s riot grrrl meets Seattle grunge rock a la Hole. The punk-saturated “Sun Shine” packages irony with crunchy bar chords and Riley’s vocals, which resemble early Courtney Love minus the screaming. Nieto’s simple drumbeats bring the elements together neatly, helping give the music its magnetic momentum.
As of now, Riley and Nieto are content as a duo but open to bringing a bassist on board if they can find someone who’s as enthusiastic about revamping Monterey’s music scene.
BURNT PALMS perform at 9pm, Saturday, Sept. 15, at The Lobby at the Golden State Theatre, 417 Alvarado St., Monterey. $5. 297-2472.