Photos By: Morgan Klein

By: Tyler McQuillan

A show at The Casbah is always an intimate yet simple affair, an event focused on what matters: the music. Hibou’s (pronounced “ee-boo”) show this past Tuesday was no exception. Hailing from Seattle, solo writer and performance frontman Peter Michel has crafted a surf-pop sound some have compared to early Vampire Weekend. While his sound is generally calm, Michel’s music embodies a positive energy and upbeat tempo that can get any concertgoer dancing along.

But good music is only one variable in the equation of a live performance. As those in attendance were fortunate enough to learn, though, Michel has figured out the art of performing live as well. Playing with the aid of three other musicians, Michel and company delivered an outstanding performance. The group has a palpable chemistry, and it is clear they enjoy playing Michel’s tunes together. All employed good composure on stage as well, dealing with a minor feedback hiccup without missing a beat or looking so much as phased. Michel has secured a solid group of guys for this tour, and one can only hope they’ll be around for future endeavors too.

I found it particularly awesome to see a band sticking to a stripped down, instrumental performance. Michel still toys with sound experimentation, making use of a pedal setup in an almost Minus the Bear fashion that stays true to his surf-pop sound. But in the end, these guys were music, pure and simple. The Casbah came alive as everyone vibed along with Hibou’s smooth and upbeat jams. Give these guys a listen and be sure to catch them while they’re touring the US or the next time they head back down to SD. Also be on the lookout for a full-length record out on September 18th on Barsuk Records; it will definitely be an enjoyable listen.