Archive for the ‘live music’ Category

Photo: Beauty Bar Austin

Took this photo many months ago during a show at the Beauty Bar in Austin, Texas.

The Beauty Bar in Austin

Photo at The Parish

I love The Parish.  I think they have the best sound in Austin and it’s a great venue all around.  I arrived early for an event a couple months back and took this photo while I was waiting for the party to start.

The Parish

The Parish

Zack Hadley of Frantic Clam

I took this photo a few months back at the Frantic Clam EP Release Party at the Beauty Bar in Austin, Texas.

Zack Hadley - Frantic Clam

Zack Hadley - Frantic Clam

I took hundreds of photos that night, all with my Tamaron 17-50mm f/2.8 lens that I probably overpaid for at Precision Camera & Video.  It’s a decent lens, and I bought it used so I didn’t pay that much, but I really should have been using something with a lower aperture because I wound up with very few images that weren’t blurred or severely noisy.

Anyway, I haven’t posted for a while and figured I would share this photo with whatever audience is left out there 🙂

PHOTOS: Darren Hoff at the Continental Club

I haven’t had as much time to go out and take photos for the past month, but I did make it out to the Continental Club a few weeks ago to catch Darren Hoff And The Hard Times play a great set.

Ah the old Continental Club, with their red stage lights and the blue neon sign in the background.  I think it’s actually pretty fun to take photos at this world-famous Austin venue, but I am always a bit disappointed when I get home and look at the shots.  It’s just really, really hard to get good pictures in there, but I guess the challenge is part of what makes it interesting.

I shot these photos at ISO 800 with my 50mm f/1.4 prime lens.  As I have mentioned before, I like to try and get a few shots at the lowest ISO possible, even in dark places like this, to reduce noise.  Sometimes I come home with that one perfect photo, but usually, as was the case this night, there are just a couple of decent pictures and nothing that really stands out.

Darren Hoff at The Continental Club

This is a decent shot of Hoff, but I’m disappointed with the focus on his face, and the washed out colors.  I reduced the saturation in the red and orange, which is why it looks a bit washed out, but I thought this was better than the deep red hue the entire photo had due to the odd lighting on the stage.  Click below for a couple more photos.

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The Point of Ecstasis

‘To be outside ones’ self’ is ecstasis. I felt outside myself last night.  I went to a show to see Ume and The Laughing at the Highball.

The Laughing (photographer : Cory Ryan)

 

The Laughing were really good.  The very precise drums and heavy bass seemed to set the tone for the very rhythmic and melodic songs.  These guys put on a good show and they’re a good  band with a hell of a lot of upside.

I have to add that the PA quality of the venue wasn’t that great.  The vocals, for both bands, were hindered by the equipment, but both made do fairly well.  And the fact that they’re two bands grounded by the music helps, ’cause the instruments sounded fine.

Ume (ooo-may)

 

 

 

 

Ume, was definitely the highlight of the night.  That whole band is talented and they do put on a hell of a live show. Lauren Larson is something else on

the guitar.  I was basically right in front of her, and every time I opened my eyes, and found myself in it’s body, I noticed me studying her hands to try to learn how the hell she makes those damn good guitar sounds.  Hell, she was probably outside herself too.

Lauren Larson of Ume

 

 

 

 

It’s nice to find talented peers of mine.  And so close to home.  I can’t wait to see these bands again at SXSW.  I recommend giving them a listen.

I don’t think I explained the point of ecstasis but, it’s really just something realized when you’re outside yourself.

http://www.umemusic.com

http://www.wearethelaughing.com


What You Missed at the Red Eyed Fly Last Night

Noise from 913 at Red Eye Fly

Noise from 913 at Red Eyed Fly

When I agreed to take a trip to the Red Eyed Fly last night to check out my friend Keny’s band I honestly hoped for the best, but prepared myself for the worst.  I was shocked.  These guys are genuinely talented.

Calling themselves Noise from 913, a reference to the practice spot at the Metropolis Apartments in Austin where the band rehearses, band members Keny (front man), Wes (guitar), Conner (bass) and Daniel (drums) are soulful rockers with a fun edge.  They played a quick set of original songs which lead man Keny Smith delivered with raw conviction.  He engaged the small crowd in attendance and performed as if it were packed venue, complete with witty commentary between songs.

I can’t quite put my finger on their sound, but the performance felt very genuine.  The band still loves music and the members seem to have just enough corporate pain and struggle to capture the passion that draws the listener in and conveys a powerful message.  The show ended with a Hendrix cover of Are You Experienced, to which I’m sure Hendrix himself was blazin’ up a fatty and swaying to the beat.  Be sure to catch their next performance March 11th at the Red Eyed Fly.  You won’t be sorry.

GOBI at The Parish – Austin Free Week 2010

My final Free Week 2010 photo post.  I already shared some pictures of Gobi playing the Beauty Bar, but I want to share some of my photos from their show at The Parish a few days later.  That was a very fun night, big turnout and lots of energy on the dance floor.  There were a couple other photographers there, including Delicious Noise and another person who I did not recognize.

GOBI, of course, was great, full of energy, pumped to play a show at such a great venue, and as usual they got a crowd of fans dancing immediately.  At one point there were even chicks dancing on the stage with them.  And they played my favorite Gobi song, Dirty Dancing, so I couldn’t be happier about getting to see these guys perform twice in one week.

Anyway, The Parish is pretty great for taking pictures of live performances because they have a nice lighting system with lots of moving spotlights and different colors, and a fog machine that can help create some dramatic images.  It might be a little tough to get those perfect shots, but patience pays off at this venue, and I was able to shoot the entire outing at ISO 800, which makes me very happy.  I threw away probably 100 photos, but those that turned out to be in focus and nicely framed are worth sharing.

Phil Arciniega - GOBI

See the rest of the photos by clicking here…

PHOTOS: Freshmillions at The Parish – Austin Free Week 2010

My final Free Week outing was at The Parish, by far my favorite downtown venue for its incredible sound system and acoustics, the fantastic stage lighting, and the somewhat swanky interior vibe that is comfortable while still feeling just a bit fancy.  Most of all, it’s the sound that brings me back to The Parish over and over again, I just can’t get over how great they can make any band or act sound in that place.

I took some photos at The Parish once a few months ago, before I had even a clue how to capture decent shots of live bands in dark venues, and it was also before they had their state-of-the-art lighting system installed.  I also found myself backstage that night to shoot pictures of the band in while they were hanging out in the green room, which was when I learned about the limitations of portrait photography without flash assistance.  You can see my terrible first attempt at shooting Slowtrain at The Parish here.

Anyway, Freshmillions.  Hadn’t heard of these guys before.  They’re good, really fun show, unique sound, crazy instrumentation.  For this performance they had Bryan Richie of The Sword playing guitar, which was a very cool bonus.  This was my first ever experience shooting a live band with real spotlights, stage fog, and LED effects.  It was harder than I imagined, and while a couple photos came out OK, I still need a lot of practice.  Enjoy the pics!

Mike Fonseca - Freshmillions

4 more photos after the jump!

GO TO THIS: Frantic Clam EP Release Party at Beauty Bar

Local rockers Frantic Clam are finally releasing their long-awaited EP titled Lolita: Singles.  It is a superb record with incredible songs, including the highly acclaimed Sasha Grey which received national attention when it was initially leaked.

The party is going to kick some serious ass.  Here are the details:

  • When: This Thursday (Jan 14, 2010)
  • Where: Beauty Bar, Austin
  • Who’s Playing: FRANTIC CLAM, The Pons, Motel Avivi, Candi and the Strangers, DJ Czech One
  • Drinks: Free Treaty Oak rum after 10pm!

And the best part about this show is that you can get in for only $3 if you RSVP here.  So you get to see a bunch of awesome bands, drink free Treaty Oak rum, and hang out with weirdos like me, Tyler Groover, and Frantic Clam, for only three dollars!  You aren’t going to find a better deal than this on Thursday night!

Photo: Milk Thistle at Red 7 – Free Week 2010

I stopped by Red 7 last week to see another one of my favorite Austin bands, Frantic Clam, who is set to release their brand new EP titled Lolita: Singles next week, which includes the hit song Sasha Grey.  I brought my camera along to try and get some photos of these guys playing, but unfortunately they played on the inside stage under a pathetic single light bulb because, for unknown reasons, the show lights weren’t turned on.  The lighting was so dismal that I didn’t even take my camera out for their set.

However, outside before Frantic Clam played I caught the tail end of Milk Thistle’s set, and they were very good!  I really enjoyed seeing them play, and I hope to catch then live again soon.

I snapped this photo of Milk Thistle’s lead singer (who’s name I am unsure of), and while I think the photo looks fairly good from a photography standpoint, I wish it could be a bit sharper, maybe more in focus.   This is a good example of a live music photo that, in my opinion, is almost there, but not quite professional quality.  The image manages to capture some of the singer’s passion and intensity during this song, but it falls just short of having the focus quality and overall sharpness that I am striving to deliver with my camera work.

Milk Thistle

Milk Thistle

So, what went wrong?  Any pros out there who can give me an idea of how to get this kind of shot in perfect focus?  The image was shot with my 50mm f/1.4 lens, ISO set to 800, aperture at 1.4, shutter speed at 1/125.  I think I managed to get a good amount of light through the lens at that speed, but perhaps my aim was a bit off on the focus?