Live Review: Pepper Rabbit @ Rock'n'Roll Hotel, 6/14/2011

So there I was on birthday eve, preparing to spend a night in and rest up for the revels later in the week. But thanks to the gentle arm-twisting of a friend (thanks, DP), I ended up at the Rock'n'Roll Hotel, taking in one heck of a good show. Which, as you can imagine, was an infinitely better way to ring in another year than just watching boring old reruns in one's pajamas.

Pepper Rabbit, on tour with the adorably lively Louisiana firecrackers Givers, wasted no time in making quite an impression on me. I was instantly charmed, taken in wholeheartedly by their super cute pop hooks and delirious jangle. Combining elements of bands like The Morning Benders (sunshiney retro pop), Longwave (earnest rambunctiousness), Generationals (dizzy dandiness) and Hooray for Earth (crucial keys at crucial times), Pepper Rabbit bounded along from song to song, emitting affability and impossible catchiness at every note.

The LA boys impressed for the duration of their set. The mournful pastoral "Older Brother" was tender and sweetly cooed, while "Red Wine" was artfully done, slinking along in placid perfection. Their bouncy, chirpy vibe was hard to resist. They showed a cheeky streak, too, even pretending to be Givers at one point in their set, impish grins breaking out across the stage giving away their ruse. Darling! Oh, behave, sirs.

I can't tell y'all just how happy I am to have caved to some peer pressure and gone to the show. Pepper Rabbit alone was well worth leaving the old homestead for, and I can't encourage you enough in your endeavors to seek them out and make them a part of your record collection, not to mention seeing them live. I was pleasantly surprised and then some.

mp3: Rose Mary Stretch (Pepper Rabbit from the forthcoming Red Velvet Snow Ball)

[photo by Noah Jashinski]


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