Kurt Vile and Beach Fossils: An Ethereal Rock 'n' Roll Experience at Grand Central Miami

Photo by Khadija Bhuiyan

Kurt Vile & The Violators
With VBA, Band in Heaven, and Beach Fossils
Grand Central, Miami
Friday, November 1, 2013

Kurt Vile is the unassuming anti-rock star for a new generation.

As a guitarist, Vile brings an understated athleticism to his playing that perfectly suits the charming and often revealing songs that have earned him a tentative spot in the pantheon of great songwriters.

The magic of Vile's music (particularly the work off his most recent release, Wakin on a Pretty Daze) is in its intimacy. So appropriately, this past weekend's performance by Vile and his band, the Violators, at Miami's Grand Central, was a tender, ethereal rock 'n' roll experience.

We doubt, though, he will be casting his song spells on these kinds of smaller clubs for much longer.

See also: Kurt Vile on Pretty Daze: "Who Lately Has Opened an Album With a Nine-Minute Song?"

Photo by Khadija Bhuiyan

The night was kicked off by VBA, a band that features drummer Vince Nudo of Priestess (as well as the Violators), and a band that has a split release in the works with Vile.

The set was a distillation of all that is great in gazin' psych rock: Loud, fuzzy, and with a bit of punk rock attitude. VBA was fantastic, if sort of an aural oddity on the bill.

Photo by Khadija Bhuiyan

West Palm Beach's rising stars of psych-pop, The Band in Heaven, followed VBA and offered a blend of breezy psych and airy textures to a crowd that'd begun to swell in size. The group's single, "Dandelion Wine," was an early highlight as the night settled into a nice, otherworldly vibe.

Though a fan called out for The Band in Heaven's Spaceman 3 cover, the crowd were forced to settle for more of the quintet's own great originals, which we here at Crossfade were completely cool with.

Photo by Khadija Bhuiyan

Next up was Beach Fossils, which might've ended up being the biggest band to come from the increasingly saturated lo-fi rock scene if Cole Smith had remained a member and brought the group the amount of attention that his offstage behavior has afforded DIIV.

Still, Beach Fossils' music, a wash of twinkling post-surf guitar and distant vocals, has brought the Brooklyn band no shortage of love.

Photo by Khadija Bhuiyan

And the outfit's performance -- its first in Florida ever -- was met by an excited audience that shouted lyrics, danced like the attendees of an '80s prom, and held cherubic frontman, Dustin Payseur, high overhead in moments of rock 'n' roll drama that belied the demure sounds that the Beach Fossils guys were conjuring.

See also: Kurt Vile on Computer-Free Rock: "Well, That's Cool, But Kinda Hard to Do, It's a Luxury"

Location Info


Grand Central

697 N. Miami Ave., Miami, FL

Category: Music

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Luis Hernandez
Luis Hernandez

shout out to the people that actually pay money to go to shows and buy their own drinks! it is because of you that allows the miami cultural elites to get everything comped.

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