When Clap Your Hands Say Yeah singer Alec Ounsworth said “It’s good to be back in California,” the Casbah crowd responded with a wild cheer.
On tour to support its 2011 album, Hysterical, CYHSY played well together and managed to recreate their unmistakable sound in the live setting. The stage at the Casbah is rather small and the band could’ve used a bit more room to work — keyboardist/guitarist/backing vocalist Robbie Guertin really needed more space — but they made the best of it, and Guertin kept a smile on his face throughout the show. The band played 18 songs, including a two-song encore. Highlights included “Satan Said Dance,” “Is This Love,” and “The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth.”
Toronto, Canada’s The Darcys opened the evening with a strong set from their self-titled album. The band’s performance was an incredible wave of sound where vocals, melodies, and solos all blended effortlessly into one. Jason Couse, Wes Marskell, Michael le Riche, and Dave Hurlow spent a few days in San Diego before the show, surfing, going to a Padres game, visiting Balboa Park, and writing new songs. For reasons that all San Diegans understand, they hope to return soon. You’ll want to catch their show when they do.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and the Darcys at the Belly Up – May 18, 2012 – by Sylvia Borgo