Pretty Oakland

We first saw Grand Lake at Artists' Television Access, the best possible way to get to know a band. People talk trash about ATA's sound quality, but we think it sounds great. It's not where you'd want to hear Stevie Wonder, but so what? Once your evening's sonic palate has been prepped with experimental film and can beer, you're ready for something weird and loud yet mellifluous, not smooth or subtle. (Unless the show includes Emily Jane White, in which case you simply need to have had the cheap wine, not the beer.) Grand Lake is the kind of band where you can't believe how pretty it is, for all that distortion, volume, herky-jerky syncopation, and screamin' guitars — or how sad it is, for all that anger.
Wed., Jan. 6, 9:30 p.m., 2010

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