There is something so satisfying about seeing my friends succeed. This past Friday (the 13th!!), I ventured to the dark side, otherwise known as H St NE, to see my pal Josh Epstein in his band Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. at The Red Palace. Opened up by the Generationals, a group of youngsters so cute you could literally pinch their cheeks and not feel creepy, the evening was fabulous.
The Generationals support each other wholly (even though the band is not technically a whole) with a solid sound somewhere mashed between The Strokes and Vampire Weekend. One lead vocalist has a nice higher pitched sound that compliments the other's more mellow vocal range. They are excitable and come equipped with a rotating group of musicians including a keyboardist, a drummer, and a bass player who looked like Cousin It (though like, on vacation, as he was wearing aviators). They were a great opening piece for the aforementioned Dale and gang.
Josh and his friend Daniel started Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. after discovering a kinship for each other's sound around the Detroit music scene. They were both coming from other projects and were hoping to find something that would give them the freedom to experiment with new ranges while still holding onto the sounds they create so seamlessly. They just added a new drummer at the onset of this tour, and that young whip appears to be a good fit. This band has such an impressive stage presence that it is hard not to have a good time.
Above is a shot of Josh singing into, yes that's right, a telephone. He is wearing a suit, as was the rest of the band, to support their forthcoming album It's a Corporate World. DEJJ played a lot of the covers they are known for, including the highlight, "We Almost Lost Detroit" and the Beach Boys "God Only Knows". The rest of the set consisted of a slew of the newbies due out on June 7. They sounded fantastic, and I was pleased to support my friend.
Oh, did I mention they blew bubbles and invited folks on stage to sing in skeleton masks? Yeah, that too. They also had several giant wooden letters spelling out JR in bright bold lights. I know, hilarious. But don't listen to me, I had such a good time with these fellows I got kicked out of the Red Palace. If you want to get a better idea, watch the clip below, or try your damnedest to see them next time they are in DC.