Thursday, June 5, 2014

New Song by People Get Ready "Physiques" (New Album Due June 24 & NYC Tour Dates June 19, 24)

Steven Reker @NYLA (Photo by Ian Douglas)
Steven Reker is one of those people you can tell is a dancer before they even move at all. There's energy in his spine and facial charm galore, never mind that he's a frontman of the Brooklyn band People Get Ready with live gigs that are more performance art than performances.  I first came across Reker during David Byrne's 2009 tour as the only male dancer on stage, offering post modern gestures and acoustic guitar with a dance chorus mentality. Since then I have seen a several concerts with his band, in front of a dance audience at New York Live Arts (NYLA), plus music venues such as Bowery Ballroom and Brooklyn Academy of Music. The music is just part of the creative package, a lush low-fi approach that pushes the boundaries with jagged percussion, angular guitar strokes and Reker's smooth baritone barely intoning the lyrics while background vocals punctuate the tunes -- usually streamlined with only vowel sounds.

The title track "Physiques" from the upcoming second full-length album follows this aesthetic doctrine, with a video showing Reker lost in his own world of choreographed movement. With Reker remaining in place as if channeling a Trisha Brown Accumulation piece, the other band members keep busy with various sports and other visual activities to delight the viewer.  But the song is solid on its own, maybe give a listen without watching the video just to appreciate the effort there as well.

People Get Ready will be kicking off New York City's River to River Festival on June 19 and celebrating the record release with a show at Rough Trade in Brooklyn June 24.  This band is always worth seeing and I'm eager to hear the entire collection of new songs.