Live Review: rubix shoes, comme si Comme sa, slashed tires

april 20 • house show

On April 20 I made the trek up to a special holiday house show to see Rubix Shoes and to celebrate my own religious tradition of getting my face rocked off as often as possible.
Seattle’s Slashed Tires, multi-instrumentalist Kenneth Piekarski’s one man band, started the show off with his beat machine inspired, funky jazz experiments. The songs started with a beat and Peikarski gradually built the song, looping guitar riffs until they all ultimately ended in a noisy, chaotic jam somehow involving a trumpet. In theory the formula could be a vessel and showcase for a very talented, innovative and expansive artist, but theory and reality don’t always collide. Even in the cozy, minimally populated basement, it was pretty awkward to listen to and watch Slashed Tires perform, generally due to sloppy musicianship and the poorly timed/off-beat loops. I feel like good and accurate execution is absolutely necessary when looping multiple things, or maybe I just don’t get it.
Next up was Seattle three piece Comme Si Comme Ca, whose lo-fi, folky brand of indie rock coupled with undeniably beautiful dual female vocal harmonies were definitely a pleasant surprise of the night. Based on that sentence you could probably guess that they sound something like Cat Power, Kimya Dawson, Feist, Regina Spektor, Jenny Lewis, etc., which wouldn’t be bad comparisons, but you might regret writing them off as carbon copied members of an already oversaturated genre. The band utilizes and trades off playing a variety of instruments to make things a little more interesting, like a xylophone, a few floor toms, guitars, a cello, and so on. Not to say they were absolutely flawless at every instrument, but the there was a certain charm and lightheartedness about the whole performance that made the few notes that were off just kind of float through the ceiling.
The last three songs in the band’s set were by far the highlight, stripping away the excess instruments and focusing on vocal harmonies. Comme Si Comme Ca is definitely a band to check out if you get the chance.
Closing out the night was house band Rubix Shoes, who opened with a psychedelic jam to Pink Floyd’s “Time.” This was also the band’s first show with a part-time bassist, successfully filling out their sound and kicking out the rock even harder (yes, it’s possible).
Rubix Shoes is a fun band to listen to and see live because they almost effortlessly and constantly are morphing from one influence and genre to the next without missing a step. Definitely never a dull moment. They released their instrumental ep, Explore Shapes, back in March and have since started adding a few vocal parts which is a nice touch to the live show. With the momentum of the ep and frequent shows, Rubix Shoes are shaping up to be a favorite Bellingham band.
–Sarah Bryant