Room 5 Lounge Los Angeles, CA
The Players: Abby Posner, vocals, banjo, acoustic guitar; Donovon Bullen, stand-up bass; Cara Batema, accordian; Kristen Gleeson-Prata, drums.
Material: Abby Posner, accompanied with her backing band the Myth, has a bluegrass sound that many current indie/folk artists would love to emulate. The set opener, “Darkest Winter” is a banjo laden romp that hits the ground running. “Ghosts and Frames,” the title track from the band’s upcoming album, is a plucky jaunt about unrequited love that shows off gang vocals and the Myth beautifully. The slower mid-set track, “Around,” shows another side of Poner, proving that she can not osnly pen a great uptempo track, but one befitting a slow dance as well. Her standout track, both live and on record, is “Moon.” It has a bluegrass feel befitting a band from the South, with a dangerous city edge that truly embodies the band’s feel and energy. The recorded version boasts brass instruments, something that is lacking in the live performance, but it is still the group’s best effort either way.
Musicianship: Posner has a very earthy tone to her voice. While she does occasionally reach to hit a higher note-—like, maybe once in the whole set—it isn’t enough to detract from the rest of her performance. She also adds a bit more grit to her voice live that is missing from the recorded versions and give the songs and extra edge. The Myth are the perfect fit for their energetic leader, matching her performance and even shining with their own solo moments.
Performance: Abby & the Myth put on a high octane performance that lit the small venue on fire. At one point, the tables were shaking with how vigorously the audience was getting into the performance. With such a high energy and just enough of a spin on the tracks to make them sound brand new, it’s easy to say that this band is one that actually sounds better live than on album. (A pretty big feat given how good they do sound recorded.) They all truly feel what they’re playing and, as an audience member, it was a complete joy to witness.
Summary: Abby & the Myth are the kind of band that music fans always hope to stumble upon at a bar, but seldom ever do. With a presence big enough to fill an arena, it is hopefully just a matter of time before they get there. – Victoria Patneaude