The Upshot: at the Lost Lake Lounge last week, Robert Schwartzman & Co. proved that the pop savant frontman’s not just another pretty L.A. face.
BY TIM HINELY
I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart of Los Angeles pop combo Rooney. Oh sure, the leader , Robert Schwartzman, is from a Hollywood family and the band gets way too many Weezer comparisons, but I like this band way more than River Cuomo’s band. Schwartzman’s songwriting obviously owes a serious debt to Brian Wilson, but that’s ok as he knows how to write a solid pop song. The guy’s got talent, he’s not just another pretty L.A. face. .
They rarely make it to this part of the country very often, it had been five years so the packed house at the small Lost Lake was hungry for this band to deliver.
In the crowd were definitely many young females who might not ever show up at this dive bar on Colfax if it wasn’t for the fact that cool guy Schwartzman was on stage. Touring for their new lp, Washed Away, the band came out a a 5-piece with Schwartzman leading the way along with a bassist, drummer (a real young looking drummer, I might add…is this kid even out of high school?) , female keyboardists who added backing vocals and a guitarist who had a fabulous mustache. They kicked into “All the Beautiful People” from said new lp and also from that record proceeded to play hooky cuts like “My Heart Beats 4 U,” “Why,” “Do You Have to Go?” and the title track. It’s not their best album, but a strong record for sure.
From their previous album 2011’s Eureka, they played “I Can’t Get Enough” and “Stars and Stripes” but from that album they didn’t play my favorite cut, “Holdin’ On.” (bummer!). They ended the set after about an hour and fifteen minutes but played no encore, instead choosing to mingle with the crowd, which seemed to end the night just perfectly.