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L.A. Beat

Record Holder and Treeline christen new Tongue N’ Groove’s stage

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With so many shows happening all over the city on Saturday, I was impressed to see good sized crowds at all of them, whichThe Record Holder helped open the new Tongue N’ Groove, Dec. 18. Photo by Richard Amery makes me think there is room for  all of these new live music venues. That is never a bad thing.

As expected, the official opening of the Tongue N’ Groove was packed, Dec. 18. They had to turn people away at the door.

And while I missed being around for the ‘magic’ of the original, having just moved here during its final days, the new one has more of a funky, jazzy clean, upper class feel, with Joseph, Corrie Brough’s partner greeting people at the door checking the list and letting people in by removing a hefty metal chain from the entrance.

The big upraised bar dominates the east side of the room separated from a massive hardwood floor stage on the the west side of the room by an artfully paint splattered concrete floor. There is local artwork on the walls including a familiar piece of a girl  drinking a glass of milk from the old Tongue N Groove. Other than a massive pillar at the north side of the bar, there isn’t a bad seat in the house.

 The night before, owner Corrie Brough said he was adamant about starting shows early, which was great news to me  and anybody else who has to get up early the next morning (especially on week days), however, due to a couple members of Treeline showing up late, the Tongue N’ Groove’s first show didn’t start until just before 9:30 p.m., like most other shows in the city.

Taylor Ackerman of Treeline at the Tongue N’ Groove, Dec. 18. Photo by Richard Amery

But they took the stage, with Ryan Dyck and Taylor Ackerman sharing lead vocals and guitars, Clayton Smith on drums and Tyler Bird on stand up bass, and began a  set of alt country music along the lines of Son Volt and Steve Earle, which even had a couple two stepping in front of the stage.

The sound is crisp and clear and was well suited to Treeline’s brand of old school style country music and sounded superb in every corner of the room. And while the stage lighting is mediocre like the stage lighting of several other popular  venues in the city,  new LED lights are set to arrive in the next couple weeks.

 The long awaited return of the Record Holder with Clayton Smith on drums is what drew a good portion of the crowd to opening night. And they sounded great especially considering they hadn’t played together for about four months, since Mike Granzow moved to  Palo Alto, California to attend Stanford University and  his brother Jon moved to Montreal. I arrived back in time to hear my favourite Record Holder song ‘Amsterdam.’ Their all original upbeat, jazz tinged  and immediately appealing indie pop-music featuring Nicole Hembroff’s violin and jazzy vocals sounded fantastic and had the audience up dancing, especially when Hembroff took lead vocals, showing off some impressive range and strong melodies.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 21 December 2010 13:25 )  
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