It’s easy to ignore the serenity of a summer day in New York City when you are constantly surrounded by sizzling asphalt and steaming dumpsters. But thankfully, the free concert series at Hudson River Park’s breezy Pier 84 gives New Yorkers a reason to cool off and soak in the summer vibes.
The name of the series is RiverRocks and this year’s lineup continues to deliver some of the most promising names in underground music. But music is not the only thing New Yorkers can look forward to enjoying at RiverRocks. Pier 84 is also the largest pier in the park which features, among other things, a water-play area, boat and bike rentals, a dog run, a water taxi, and plenty of room to bathe in the sun. Coupled with RiverRocks’ continuous program of free concerts, Pier 84 makes the perfect recipe for a relaxing summer evening in the city.
And if last year’s lineup was any indication, which included Foxygen and New Jersey punk upstarts Titus Andronicus, then this year’s roster of bands should also be sure to please, including Teenage Fan Club and Temple. Tomorrow’s concert is no exception, and among several other groups, Boston band Mutual Benefit should offer the perfect contrast to New York’s unrelenting heat.
Mutual Benefit is a band that embraces the city landscape by focusing on the pastural sounds of urban parks and green spaces. As singer Jordan Lee puts it himself in the song “Let’s Play”, “on that slow train rolling / through the city / the sun is rising / the cornfields blurring / my mind is muddled / our hearts our heavy / our bodies seem so temporary.”
The band’s knack for highlighting the delicate spots of the urban landscape and how we fit in makes them a perfect fit for hardened New Yorkers looking for a more balanced summer experience. You can catch them 6pm tomorrow at Pier 84 near 44th Street and the West Side Highway. It’s a free concert and makes for an easy stop on the commute home so enjoy the Hudson breeze and let the city stress fade. If you can’t make it, Untapped Cities was lucky enough to catch them live in Seattle in January. Watch the exclusive video above.
Additional reporting by Douglas Capraro.