Ah, El Ten Eleven. The instrumental rock duo, Kristian Dunn (double necked guitars) and Tim Fogarty (drums), put out such engaging music that it still surprises me that they aren’t playing larger venues. However, those who have heard them will return to show after show when they get a chance. And it was surprising that the New York area had a chance when the band came to Maxwell’s in Hoboken for one short night in early 2012. The band had made some last minute decisions to do a tour along the east coast following a string of dates on the west coast and through SXSW.
Dunn and Fogarty were in fine form throughout the night. Forgarty did not take time to say much as he was banging on the drums ferociously. His white tee became as translucent as a plate with an oily slice of NY pizza on it from all the sweat he released. Meanwhile, Dunn spoke to the audience, introducing tracks and thanking them for coming out to a Thursday show. As he worked his way through the setlist, Dunn switched between his double necked bass/guitar and a standard guitar mixing up of the sounds with over a dozen pedals and samplers laid out on boards at his feet. He also applied a stringed bow and an e-bow across the instruments to get more unique sounds out of them.
Repeated calls for “Swerving” were eventually greeted with the song, but as Dunn pointed out, it was only because the song was already on the setlist. It only serves to prove El Ten Eleven know their fans well enough to give them what they want. (Looking at the setlist from one of their recent shows in Colorado, you can see there are only minor differences.) The audience in Harrisburg the night before may not have known what they wanted though, as Dunn described them as being rather boring, especially compared to the rambunctious Hoboken crowd.
The set also included two new songs, “Thanks Bill” and “Transitions”, which should be out later this year, and the ever popular “Jumping Frenchmen of Maine” and “Anxiety is Cheap”. Afterwards, the guys hung out in the bar chatting with fans happy to see them again.
The Sycophants are Coming! The Sycophants are Coming!
Jumping Frenchmen of Maine
I like Van Halen because my Sister Says They are Cool
Ian Mackaye was Right
My Only Swerving
Anxiety is Cheap
3 Plus 4