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Art Brut at the Tribeca Grand Hotel
November 12 th, 2005

Written by Dan Tulino
Photographed by Lina Haskel

Art Brut, the latest of Britain’s “Rock ‘n’ Roll Revolution” bands to invade the shores of the U.S., made a four night stop in New York/New Jersey area, beginning on November 9 th at Hoboken’s Maxwell’s Café and coming to their final stop, an industry showcase on the bottom floor of the Tribeca Grand Hotel. There they played to a packed house of Gucci-clad beauties and Brit-wannabees.

South London’s finest “art-punks” made their presence felt; the walls and floors shuddered with penetrating excitement as Art Brut took the stage and plowed through a thunderous and unflappable set of almost every tune in their arsenal, including, “Bang Bang Rock & Roll,” “Rusted Guns of Milan,” “Modern Art,” and the crowd favorite “Emily Kane.”

“Stay off the crack! Stay away from Pete Doherty; he’s a bad bad man,” Eddie Argos, founder/front man of Art Brut’s quipped at the end of their pulse-halting tune “My Little Brother” (from their debut album Bang Bang Rock & Roll). The band’s mix of irony and honesty on stage won over the uber-hipsters and early-twenty’s industry high-brows who packed the barely candle-lit studio-converted lounge.

When the show commenced, I had worried about the outcome of the night for the British lads. During the set opener, a stunningly beautiful young New York couple approached and screamed into my ear, “Who’s playing tonight?” Their question stunned me. But then I forgot about it as I turned my gaze back to the stage to enjoy the welcome onslaught of power-pop from the musicians who had me flying to London one year earlier to see just why this band was garnering praise from rock critics everywhere.

Art Brut rocked and banged through a strong and mature set, steamrolling their mesmerized fans, the first-time listeners and the few ignorant New Yorkers in attendance with their irony-attacking tunes like “We Formed a Band” and “Bad Weekend.” Eddie Argos stumbled off stage into a shocked and defensive crowd that ended up falling in love with this deliberately louche, steaming and overpoweringly, charming, mustached Englishman. Argos, along with drummer Mikey B, lead-guitarist Ian Catskilkin and pristine rhythm man Jasper Future spent the night playing the part they were born to play and being what they undeniably are – f”ing rock stars!

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