The husband and wife indie-pop duo Tennis headlined Music Hall of Williamsburg last Friday night, with Andrew Marr’s Brooklyn-based project Ski Lodge. Marr led the five-piece group in set of upbeat rhythms and dark-minded power pop melodies, showcasing material from Ski Lodge’s 2013 full-length debut, Big Heart (Dovecoat).
Tennis took to the stage as a four-piece, with Patrick Riley and Alaina Moore (who celebrated her birthday the night of the show) positioned in front of the drums and bass as the dynamic duo centerpiece of the band. Riley’s guitar playing was erratic and pronounced, often diverging from the familiar melodies of songs like “My Better Self” and “Origins.” The duo performed several songs from their 2013 EP, Small Sound, but stripped of all its gritty brass arrangements and delicate baroque pop oddities. It was simple, evocative guitar music. Moore’s voice was most formidable on “Cured of Youth,” her vocals arcing and lilting on the bridge with soulful melismas. Tennis also added a new, unreleased song that had the audience ecstatic and dancing, including Moore’s sister who had just been married. “They recently eloped,” said Moore with a chuckle, “Everybody’s doing it.”
Photos by Angel Fraden;; posted on CMJ.com [here]