by Peter Aaron
Next month the Hudson Valley plays host to one of the pioneers of the hardcore punk genre and the founder of two of the most influential bands of the last 30 years: Ian MacKaye, whose current band, the Evens, is making a rare debut visit to our region. Actually, you might say we’re getting two visits, as the duo will play in Rosendale on August 6 and in Hudson on August 7.
MacKaye (vocals, baritone guitar) is the former front man of both Minor Threat and Fugazi, and his partner in the Evens, as well as in life, is Amy Farina (drums, vocals), formerly of the Warmers. Sonic references? Not what you might think, if you’re basing your assumptions on the work of MacKaye’s or Farina’s previous bands. Rather than raging hardcore or noisy post-core, the pair has a moody, atmospheric sound that blends low-key art punk with folk-ish harmonies. The couple took some time off to have a daughter after recording 2005’s The Evens and 2006’s Get Evens, but reemerged last year with The Odds (released, as were the first two albums, on MacKaye’s seminal Dischord label). Here’s a clip of the Evens live in 2006: