There is ’80s metal playing over the monitors in between sets at the Big Picture Media Showcase at Sullivan Hall, giving out a huge party vibe to every showcase attendee–whether they like it or not. Blue lights line the ceiling on the wall, and while high-pitched male voices wail, Destry is doused in blue lights as the band tunes. Frontwoman Michelle DaRosa asks for more acoustic guitar in the monitors before the group gets to work, playing swooning folk pop. Destry is a step in the opposite direction of DaRosa’s former project, Straylight Run, and the band plays “Into The Rain,” a track off of its latest album, Waiting On An Island.
The lights on the wall change from blue to red as the night wears on and States takes the stage next. Featuring former members of Copeland and Lydia, States plays upbeat, sugary sweet pop rock. Female vocalist Mindy White wears red sparkly sequin pants that catch light, and mid-set the band goes into a slow pop/rock version of Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy.” The band ends the set with its first single, a dance song, and White playfully threatens the crowd: “If you’re not moving, I’m coming out there.”
Hailing from New York City, Lily And the Parlour Tricks takes the stage with Lily and her two female backup singers dressed in vintage attire. The band is essentially a three-piece drums/guitar/bass setup with Lily’s thick, smokey voice at the helm. Her backup singers swoon and sway on her left, cooing oohs and ahhs, complete with hand gestures and all. Their dreamy, doo-wop ’50s vintage girl-pop sound is simple, and Lily dances through the set, hands on her hips and shuffling her feet, throwing in a Charleston every now and then, leading her band like a modern-day Betty Boop. Her energy is hard to resist, and by the end of the set, girls are at least mimicking her moves–or at the very least, tapping their feet.
All photos by Tanya Gelman