BEING THERE: Diane Coffee @ Kung Fu Necktie


After the release of Foxygen’s blissed-out We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic and the chain of awful events that led to them canceling an entire tour, I was pleasantly surprised by my first listen to Foxygen drummer Shaun Fleming’s solo project, Diane Coffee. But it seemed a little too good to be true, and I decided that seeing the 60’s-70’s-gospel&Mowtown-inspired indie-pop creation live at Kung Fu Necktie Saturday night would enable me to render a final verdict. Upon entering KFN, the first thing I noticed was how outnumbered I was by guys who had spent more time styling their hair than I had in the past month. After dodging cheap come-ons like “Where’s your boyfriend?” and “You’ll never get a job with a degree in journalism, but can I take you out to dinner?” (Seriously!?!), I got a chance to speak with Fleming during the opening act. We talked about moving away from life in the city and our mutual hatred for festivals. Despite his long golden locks, dark eyeliner, silky white turtleneck and flashy fur coat, he was totally normal, friendly, and helpful in loosening my grip on the grudge I had with Foxygen (who are playing Coachella this year, by the way, with Fleming behind the kit.)

Diane Coffee played a brief nine-song set, drawn largely from from their 2013 debut My Friend Fish as well as two new songs. It was perfect for the too-cool-to-dance-even-with-alcohol-but-never-too-cool-for-hair-gel crowd of about 30 people. Fleming, introduced by a bandmate as Diane Coffee herself, mentioned that he completely lost his voice the night before, but nonetheless delivered an incredibly strong vocal performance that was oddly reminiscent of Diana Ross. With his diva-esque outfit and Supremes-worthy stage moved, Fleming looked the part and played it well, too. However, the show seemed headed for a Foxygen-style-tragedy when a string on Fleming’s guitar snapped and for moment there I was certain this was going to be the part of the show that resulted in broken bones and cancelled shows. But the Diane Coffee carried on with everyone’s skeleton remained intact, finished strong with a smooth and suave “New Years” and, for a moment at least, all was right in the world. — MARY LYNN DOMINGUEZ

Never Lonely
Gov. T
When It’s Known
All The Young Girls
Tale Of A Dead Dog
(Soon To Be, Won’t To Be)
New Years