TeamMate begins their weekly July residency at Silver Lake’s Satellite on Monday, July 11th. For a school night, the event is adequately attended by a less than a hundred local east siders reveling after their long days at work. Battle Tapes, a heavy-guitar revival band opens for TeamMate as patrons order drinks, catch up with friends, and sit in nearby high top chairs waiting for the synth pop duo. This is certainly a local’s venue. One fan discusses her infatuation with TeamMate while she drinks her first beer of the evening, voicing her excitement for a dose of the band’s catching energy and incredible on-stage chemistry.
As the duo smokes up the stage with their biggest hit “Don’t Count Me Out” for their intro, this chemistry becomes apparent as the two encouragingly look at one another and gradually pump each other up as they shout the Passion Pit sounding chorus. Scott Simons and Dani Buncher dated for nearly a decade, but their chemistry still remains despite the end of their romantic relationship several years ago. Now their chemistry is honeyed synths and overlayed vocals that unite them on stage. At this point the audience is standing, but because the venue is not necessarily crowded, everyone is on display and everyone is embarrassed to be the first to dance.
That is until the band begins one of their new and unreleased songs “Something Simple,” in which two friends occupy the front of the dance floor, boogey wildly and off rhythm, but with as much enthusiasm as TeamMate puts into their vocals. The audience dancers continue their messy but gleeful moves the rest of the show and intermittently inspire others to join them until a mixed group of four are arms over shoulders head-banging to the second biggest hit, “Nothing’s Ever Over,” in which TeamMate sings about their past with a very ’80s decorated chorus, “we don’t have to fall out of love, ‘cause nothing’s ever over”.
The band continues their ’80s pop-rock feel with their penultimate song covering Pat Benatar’s “We Belong” and deliver the magic ingredient that gets even the most hesitant dancers to at least rock their heads as blue and pink lights and heavy fog call back to a nostalgia of big hair, neon, and power ballads. TeamMate ads their own flair of “ows” and “ahs” and strong drum by Buncher.
Just as the audience begins to immerse themselves in in the song, it ends prematurely at what seems like a three minute marker. The crowd is ready to really dance, but is unable to during the short-songed set. An extended chorus or a drawn out keyboard solo could turn their performance from head bopping pleasantry to an all-out indie dance party. TeamMate finishes their set with a song they’ve been playing for a few years called “Damage,” which they announce as their last to the crowd’s disappointment and surprise to a short forty minute set.
TeamMate is playing two more free concerts 7/18 and 7/25 July at The Satellite.
Don’t Count Me Out
What You Want
Until You Find Me
Nothing’s Ever Over
We Belong (Pat Benatar Cover)