Los Angeles-based indie-rock band El Ten Eleven made a stop in their home town in the middle of their 2013 Winter Tour that began shortly after the release of their latest album, Transitions. The headlining instrumental duo shared the stage with opening indie-rock band RACES to a sold out and incredibly jam-packed, shoulder-to-shoulder crowd at Santa Monica’s Central Social And Pleasure Club.
RACES didn’t get to begin playing until almost a half hour after the advertised show time, but it was early in the night and people were still trying to order drinks so there wasn’t much fuss. It helped that they put on a good set.
An extra-long sound check and other mysterious delays kept El Ten Eleven from beginning on time, and the crowd waited more than an hour for the band to be able to play, getting very close to unacceptable-and-about-to-walk-out territory. But as soon as band mates Kristian Dunn and Tim Fogarty hit the stage, they apologized and began their performance straight away.
Fogarty, who plays acoustic and electronic drums, was soaked in sweat within minutes, and Dunn had three guitars on stage (he plays doubleneck bass/guitars) and triple as many pedals laid out in front of him.
The draw to seeing El Ten Eleven live lies in their deep concentration and dedication into hitting each note perfectly, which, between just two people, is a feat. Each song is layered, loud and precise, yet still very much evoke emotional response. It’s always nice to hear a favorite song played live, but in El Ten Eleven’s case, the actual performance in itself is the real show.
All photos by Anne Park