Oikos/Mother Falcon

Live shot

Oikos (Photo by John Anderson)

Oikos/Mother Falcon

Lamberts, July 30

How many local musicians does it take to fill a stage? At Lamberts, all of Mother Falcon and its offshoot Oikos. Ten Oikosians crowded onto the small, low, wooden stage at the tony Downtown space fast becoming a hub for that which it's seeded and nurtured from the very start: native acts born of Austin's youngest, smartest demographic. Maurice Chammah, a senior this year at Cornell, studies archaeology and travels to cities in the Middle East neither you nor I would dare visit, but when he's home here, the young violinist and pianist leads a large band: three violins, three cellos, accordion, bassoon, trumpet, guitar, bass, and drums. Accordingly, given the space constraints, two of the group kicked off its 40-minute set from the floor, Tamir Kalifa stoking his accordion beside whom one presumes was Chammah. With the stage-front crush of under-21s in the already bustling room, it was tough to tell who exactly was serenading the hungry youth while also rubbing elbows amongst them. Mixing sound for 10 largely acoustic instruments was no picnic either, not with half that many mics onstage, so Oikos' orchestral roots dramas trumpeted less bassoon and cello overlay and a lot more Okkervil River – obvious reference point for the next wave of homegrown singer-songwriters. "This is pretty much all of Mother Falcon onstage," announced Chammah – that much you could hear, that and closing foothold for the newly acquainted, "Umbrella." While the bands may have been essentially the same, their fans apparently were not. Perhaps the midnight hour thinned the summer session set and their parents, but Mother Falcon, piloted by Nick Gregg on vocals, cello, mandolin, and guitar, crammed at least one if not two additional players on the club's corner wedge and proceeded to navigate an altogether more composed flight path. A Broken Social Scene in the sense that more voices could be heard within the chorus – saxophone, lap xylophone, Gregg's mandolin – the band hummed along even when the the frontman's vocals were no match for his duet with guitarist Claire Puckett. Kalifa's best Morrissey vocal was tough to beat, too. Mother Falcon's rugby scrum produced though, coalesced. If Chammah favors Will Sheff, Gregg leans toward Andrew Bird. Together, they fill music venues.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Mother Falcon
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Mother Falcon signs to Universal and seconds later terminates the contract

Kevin Curtin, Dec. 9, 2016

Worst Tour Stories Ever
Worst Tour Stories Ever
The road goes on forever and the party never ends

July 8, 2016

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
William Harries Graham
Jakes (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, April 12, 2019

Texas Platters
Rebecca Loebe
Give Up Your Ghosts (Record Review)

Christina Garcia, April 12, 2019

More by Raoul Hernandez
Texas Platters
Grupo Fantasma
American Music Vol. VII (Record Review)

April 19, 2019

Texas Platters
Sydney Wright
Seiche (Record Review)

April 5, 2019


Oikos, Mother Falcon

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle