On Friday, November 11th, Teke::Teke, the Montreal based Japanese band, performed their inaugural NYC show at Brooklyn’s Public Records, a relatively new mid-sized Gowanus venue. The venue is audiophiles dream, built to hi-fi specifications with an aesthetic reminiscent of a wood paneled listening room (in a good way). The room’s high-quality sound system was put to good use by the band, which consists of guitarists Serge Nakauchi Pelletier and Hidetaka Yoneyama, bass player Mishka Stein, drummer Ian Lettre, flutist Yuki Isami, trombone player Etienne Lebel, and vocalist Maya Kuroki, and whose music often defies categorization.
Teke::Teke is an international band in more ways than one, and though Montreal-based, the group pull influences from all over the world, and combine classical Japanese instrumentation and theatre (the show opened with a masked, Noh inspired, performance), surf-rock, psychedelia, middle-eastern guitar interplay, big band vigor, and even some doomier metal drones. On paper, this sounds like it would be a little chaotic, but it’s a credit to the band that they are able to pull these disparate sounds together on stage for a cohesive and riveting live show.
Each musician played their instrument masterfully, especially the wind instrument section which (which included a stunning bagpipe solo), and served the songs winding but interconnected themes. It was honestly a nice change of pace to see a group defy genre so deftly, in a Brooklyn scene which is saturated but mostly homogenized, and you should certainly catch the band live if at all possible.
Scroll down for pics of the show (photos by Emilio Herce)