Live: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. @ the Troubadour, 9.09.11

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All photos by David Greenwald

Due to a miscommunication over my press tickets (the kind of miscommunication I seem to only have at the Troubadour, but so it goes), I had to catch this show while my fiancée waited patiently next to scribbled portraits of the Mad Men cast and forgotten ’50s actors at the bar of the Palm Restaurant. So you’ll have to forgive me for skipping the openers in favor of steakburger sliders and bowing out in the middle of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.’s otherwise totally compelling set.

I think they’d understand — dudes are gentleman. The Detroit band came equipped with an on-stage “corporate lounge” for their most fervent fans and plenty of energy for the rest of us, growing heated enough to drop their jackets after the first song or two. The band’s very good debut album, It’s a Corporate World, has only the unfortunate weakness of following last year’s flawless Horse Power EP, but the Technicolor synth-pop of newer songs such as “Morning Thought” felt fresher from the stage. The sold-out show, by my count the band’s third pass through L.A. in the last year, drew both bottle blondes and a bro in a Bon Iver shirt; if that’s any indication, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.’s made it. Hopefully LP2 takes their economic themes to their logical conclusion and includes a Curren$y collaboration titled “Warren Buffett Green.”

Previously: New Music: “Morning Thought” | Video: “Simple Girl”