I headed to Space 15 twenty this past Sunday for indie rock band Broken Anchor’s recent EP release. Haven’t heard of them? I’m not surprised. I came across their music after a recommendation from a friend and listened relentlessly to their 3 song EP Vol. 1, with opening track “Leave the Light On” being a star player on my summer playlist. Still, I was more than ready to hear some of their newer music, as you can only listen to the same 3 songs so many times.
I arrived at the venue right around 5pm (when the event was meant to begin) to see an empty space as the band was setting up. Luckily, it’s located on a courtyard surrounded by Urban Outfitters, Free People and Umami Burger, so I kept myself busy with some window shopping. Around 5:30, I meandered outside again, found myself a popsicle and proceded to wait and wait. Around 6:30pm, opening band All Spots to Black took the stage. Their performance was rather lukewarm, although I may just have been annoyed that an hour and half after the event was supposed to begin, the music was just starting with a band I didn’t care about. All Spots to Black was a 4 piece group with a male vocalist seemingly greatly inspired by Neil Young. His sound was a bit raspy if not wholly bland and only memorable when his female counter part occasionally joined in.
While All Spots to Black didn’t exactly liven up the crowd, once Broken Anchor finally took the stage a little after 7pm, everyone was all smiles. The three piece band consisted of a drummer, bassist/hammond organ player and a rather dreamy singer/guitarist. I looked to my left, then to my right and finally behind me to see the venue had become jam packed mainly with women, likely lured by the frontman’s good looks (although he had a rather adorable girlfriend standing front and center.) As the band opened with my favorite track “Leave the Light On,” I was more than relieved to find that singer Austin had the vocal chops to back up his good looks.
As the band played through their first EP, they interspersed their set with tracks from their newest endeavor, Vol. 2, (4 new songs!) with “Scarecrow” being the most enticing, fun number of the bunch, and “Never Leave Me Alone” coming in a close second. The set was tight as Austin and his band were leaving it all on the stage, singing and playing their little hearts out. Bassist/organ player/producer Brad added depth and just a little something extra with his unique organ musings and Austin repeatedly credited him with being integral to creating the group’s signature sound. The drummer was spot on, holding the group together firmly. For two songs, Austin picked up a bass and played just with drummer. Without the guitar to hold the melody, Austin’s voice soared and his ability to command a tune so strongly with just vocals made his immense talent all the more clear. The set was fairly quick – they just don’t have that many songs yet! – and I left happy with free copies of both their EPs in my hand, long wait forgotten and ready to add “Scarecrow” to my list of favorite songs.