School of Seven Bells’ performance at the Bowery Ballroom on Friday night struck gold. I knew it’d be awesome, yet the band took their music to another plateau of sonic appreciation. The powerful threesome — Ben Curtis, Claudia Deheza, and her twin sister Alejandra Deheza — just finished up a monthlong US tour stretching far across to California. The Bowery show was a “coming home” of sorts for the New York-based band.
Ben, prior to taking the stage said, “Jessica! How are you! I’m running around, but you have to come to the Bowery Hotel with us after the show.” Claudia, whom I saw after their performance, said the same thing, “Come to the Bowery.” (So yeah, I guess I was going to Bowery.) My stop through the hotel lobby lasted ‘bout 15 minutes due from a text from Ben, “In the bar under the pizza place by Niagara. Come over. We’re here now.” Of course I knew he was speaking of one of my favorite bars, the Cabin.
Upon arrival, I found Ben, Claudia, and Alejandra holding court in the tucked-away back room, talking with friends including their manager Ryan Gentles and doing the usual catch-ups. The buzz among everyone at the Cabin was the band’s amazing performance. Everyone couldn’t stop chattering, especially Brandon Curtis — Ben’s brother from his former band Secret Machines. “I’m so glad I was able to make it tonight. So so so good.” (Now that’s coming from one of the most opinionated men in music. No family free passes from that one.)
While chatting with Alejandra, she surprised me by shifting the conversation and giving me an accolade. “The fact that you actually cared about our music when no one paid attention, years ago, in the beginning, even with On!Air!Library!, and are still here means so much. You’d always check in with us and see our progression.” I thought I was the one who was supposed to be the critic? The most critical thing I will say however is that this band isn’t going anywhere, so watch out Roseland and Hammerstein ballrooms — they’re coming soon.