Oh, the songs to sing; when we at last return again
The next gig following the Gratitude Migration wouldn’t happen until deep in the month of October. The occasion would be the release of the long awaited, production maligned, “The Space Palace”. The mythic fourth (and final?) Ellis Ashbrook album would finally see the light of day, and naturally a release party was necessary. The obvious issue was how to deal with an album release from a band that doesn’t exist in the same form as it did when recorded. The answer: merge the old with the new and invite Natalie Lowe back to perform the album and a selection of Ellis classics as part of the new lineup. The result was a five piece Ellis Ashbrook experience that would be discussed, remembered, and fawned-over in the weeks following the release. I can’t really say much about the show other than after seeing Ellis Ashbrook over a hundred times, this was, in my estimation, their best show to date. The union of Barber/Lowe/Granoff/Major is an undeniable force of artistry and performance while the addition Dan Keller as jack-of-all-trades instrumentalist resurrected the Ryan Gildea role (retired in 2007) filling out the sound while adding a tightness, a completeness I didn’t realize was missing until I heard it come together on that night in Chinatown. I, along with the rest of the near capacity crowd were visually and sonically blown away; the lingering (and obvious) quandary being, was that the last time? If it is, it would be a profound loss for each of them and all of us. I hope the parties involved get their heads out of their collective-and-individual-asses and find a way to make this work. You’ve been given a rare and precious gift, my dear friends… don’t fuck it up! It’s not too late.
Thursday, October 19, 2017: E & C STUDIO, New York, NY
Set 1 (The Space Palace): Desert Raft, Polaris, I’ll Be Around, So Simple, Off The Earth, On, Snakey Got Demonized Big Time, The Undeveloped Brain
Set 2: Accelerator, Mr. Anyone, Climax, Unbreakable, Skunk!, Psychic Vampires, Absolute Value
 Formerly referenced as [working title] “Don’t Give Up (I’ll Be Around)”
 Truncated album version
 Without intro jam