Like a well-meaning contestant on American Idol peaking too early, my weekend kicked off so strong there was no way Saturday or Sunday could live up to the standards set for it by Friday night. On this evening, I found myself in a part of LA that has no valet parking, a whole mess of non-English speaking residents, and one of the coolest venues I’ve ever been to in my life: R Bar.

Without a neon sign loudly proclaiming its presence, I almost missed this little club in Koreatown, but once I gave the doorman the password and gained entry, my eyes took in every nook and cranny of the former-brothel-turned-music-club. With gnarled wood aplenty and hidden booths around each corner, the venue had an old-timey speakeasy feel that made the night’s performances just that much more special.

The R Bar

The R Bar

All Day Sucker

Any band that can hook my interest based solely on their soundcheck must be doing something right, and such was the case with LA’s All Day Sucker. From the moment I heard the harmonized strains of Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls” during their mic check, I knew this was a band that I could get behind. (Pardon the pun. Or don’t. Whatevs.) Catchy, accessible, and fun, the band kicked off the night in style, and frontman Morty Coyle was almost as fun to watch as he was to hear.

All Day Sucker
All Day Sucker
All Day Sucker
All Day Sucker
All Day Sucker

Charly Coombes and the New Breed

After All Day Sucker left the stage, Charly Coombes and the New Breed ascended, and the rock kept on coming. While the group played their first show together a mere 6 months ago, their sound Friday night was tight and polished. The keyboard-driven songs they played off their debut EP, Panic, kept the crowd moving, and the addition of Foo Fighters violinist Jessy Greene to the mix was the icing on the cake.

Charly Coombes and The New Breed
Charly Coombes and the New Breed
Charly Coombes and the New Breed
Charly Coombes and the New Breed
Charly Coombes and the New Breed

The night ended with members from both bands taking to the stage to perform a series of covers that even got surprise attendee Kiefer Sutherland dancing. From the Beatles to the Monkees, this impromptu set was the perfect ending to a night of great music that just couldn’t be topped…no matter how hard the rest of my weekend tried.

The R Bar, Charly Coombes, All Day Sucker
The R Bar, Charly Coombes, All Day Sucker
The R Bar, All Day Sucker, Charly Coombes
The R Bar, All Day Sucker, Charly Coombes
The R Bar, All Day Sucker, Charly Coombes
Charly Coombes and the New Breed

For more info on All Day Sucker, check out:

www.myspace.com/alldaysuckermyspace

For more info on Charly Coombes and the New Breed, check out:

www.myspace.com/charlycoombes

For more info on R Bar, check out:

www.myspace.com/4rbar