If you were at Bottom of the Hill Monday night and didn’t leave covered in glitter, you obviously did something wrong. Seldom are Monday nights more enjoyable than watching Brooklyn glam-pop upstarts Friends and Splash performing interactive live sets alongside SF locals Young Digerati.
Young Digerati opened the evening as the crowd gradually began to fill in. The San Francisco four-piece played Italo-inspired dance pop songs from their new Endless Bummer EP, as well as a couple of singles, including the closing track, “Legacy.” Aside from a broken tambourine, the band warmed up the stage without a hitch. Endless Bummer is available for free download on Bandcamp and Soundcloud.
Few were prepared for the glamorous 80’s fashion spectacle to follow, as Splash adorned the stage with shimmering scarves and sheets. Splash is the late-breaking project of former Real Estate drummer Etienne Duguay, who is joined in harmony with Sasha Desree, Nick Schneider, Andre Sellars, and Jan Woo. Before the barefoot boy band began to boogie down, they instructed audience members to line up in front of the stage to “get glittered.” The band performed a handful of flamboyantly danceable pop jams including the new single, “Ever Before,” hopping around the stage to exchange instruments while revealing their dazzling costumes. In between songs, they encouraged the audience to participate in spiritual actives such as closing their eyes, opening their chakras, and raising their hands (for the sexually active). The band invited Friends frontwoman Samantha Urbani onstage to sing on the closing track, “Thank You.” While Splash doesn’t have an official release yet, they had tour cassettes and t-shirts available for sale.
Samantha Urbani wants to be your friend, and she’s never shy for a photo opportunity. Leading her band Friends on stage to perform songs from their new album, Manifest, Samantha seduced audience members with vocal/bass/percussion support from Lesley Hann, keyboards/guitars/percussion from Nikki Shapiro and Matthew Molnar, and drums from Olivar Duncan. The Brooklyn quintet entertained the crowd with singles such as “Friend Crush” and “I’m His Girl,” including a cover of the Ghost Town DJ’s hit, “My Boo.” Friends ended their set with the call-and-response female empowerment jam “Va Fan Gor Du.”
Friends and Splash will continue to dazzle audiences in select U.S. cities throughout the summer. Catch Young Digerati at Slim’s on July 28th.