Dim the lights down a bit. It’s time to disengage from your typical night on the town and experience a scenic wave of sound. On Saturday, Sophia’s Thai Kitchen continues its 2011 winter concert series with Typhoon, AgesandAges, Brainstorm and Elders at Odd Fellows Hall.
Sophia’s Thai Kitchen, better known as Sophia’s, has become a major staple in the West Coast indie music scene. Thanks to its ambient and dreamy charm, many bands have played shows at Sophia’s and can’t help but come back.
Kevin Wan, the owner and booking manager of Sophia’s directs the selective process.
“Sophia’s has been doing its concert series for about five years now, but it seems like over the last two years it’s organically become a staple in the West Coast indie touring circuit,” said Wan. “Many, many things factor into the booking process. Beyond obvious things like talent, I look for something that’s interesting; something different yet appealing.”
And appealing is the right word. For this upcoming show, Wan has chosen the Portland band Typhoon, a colorful ensemble of 11 performing members, to take the stage.
“Typhoon’s sound is full and dynamic without sounding muddled and messy. I also love the epic feel of their songs,” Wan said. “In this era of three-minute, 30-second, radio-friendly pop songs and a-la-carte iTunes purchases, I enjoy their sweeping seven-minute songs that seamlessly bleed into each other. The stream-of-consciousness spirit of their song structure is a nice departure from your typical verse-course-verse offering.”
Speaking with Kyle Morton, lyricist and lead singer of Typhoon, one senses a deep appreciation for performing live with his band.
“My favorite part about performing live is mostly that it’s a strange thing,” Morton said. “I’ve never been able to do it without being aware of the process. It always feels strange to me. But sometimes it’s with a lot of your friends, and it gets deflected a little bit. I wouldn’t want to do it differently. It would be way too scary.”
Typhoon will perform songs from their previously released album Hunger and Thirst which has put them on the map as a top pick in the Portland music scene. Typhoon will also perform songs from their unreleased EP entitled “A New King of House,” which is scheduled to be released on March 8.
“Our music is always influenced by our surrounding,” Morton said. “As far as natural surroundings go – it’s beautiful here and it’s home for us [in Portland]. I think a lot of our stuff comes from living here. There are a lot of different reasons why Portland has a great music scene – it’s on a very tight-knit level. Everyone kind of knows each other. Bottom line, I think it makes it because they like to do it.”
Along with AgesandAges, Brainstorm and Elders, Typhoon is set to play a great show at Odd Fellows Hall – a venue different than the usual Sophia’s show. Wan has great hopes for the new performance space that keeps with the classic feel of Sophia’s in a different way.
“It’s definitely produced on a larger scale. The capacity at Odd Fellows is 400, which is obviously much larger than Sophia’s,” Wan said. “The “feel” of the winter series is that of a more formal concert setting. The Odd Fellows shows will be more like a show you can expect to go to at a traditional concert venue like The Independent in San Francisco or The Troubadour in Los Angeles.”
Not too long ago, KDVS 90.3 FM DJ David Saunders unintentionally discovered Typhoon in the music library.
“I came across Typhoon and listened to some of their songs, all of which I really liked,” Saunders said. “Overall, I find the entire album to be really well-made and I’m happy that this band is getting some exposure prior to their concert in Davis.”
For more information about Sophia’s Winter Concert Series, visit sophiasthaikitchen.com.
UYEN CAO can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Typhoon, AgesandAges, Brainstorm, Elders
Odd Fellows Hall, 415 Second St.
Saturday Jan. 22
$10 advance, $12 at the door