It's a shame the Blank Tapes' cute-cute-cute (that's cute cubed!) set at Portfolio Coffeehouse was not officially—or even unofficially—affiliated with Long Beach's art/music/potpourri marathon Tour des Artistes: the quaint 30-plus minute performance couldn't have been a more pleasant nightcap after a day filled with gigs by such solid acts as LA jazz duo Leviathan Brothers and Long Beach folker Brett Bixby. Sad/silly numbers "Oil & Water" and "Together Forever" went down like heated milk on a sleepy night, with Blank Tapes main man Matt Adams softly crooning rhymes ("Oil and water will never combine/it seems like a waste of my time/you call me a friend now/but what's in a name/it seems like a waste of my time/to complain" and the Magnetic Fields-esque "We'll be together forever/we'll be forever together/we'll be the snow on the mountain/we'll be the coins in the fountain") to melodies that could—and should—be built into music boxes. Also on hand to help out was violinist/guitarist/banjo sweetie Kim Kylland (one-half of the Pink Flamingos), who opened the set with a charming ukulele ditty—a Flamingos original, according to a fan in the audience, but he could have been mistaken, and I, sadly, have no clue—and later lent some serious weepy violin strings to the stellar standout "Rain Cloud." Adams might call San Francisco home now—and rightfully so: this former OC guy was just named Best New Folkie by SF Weekly—but he remains a perfect fit back here in SoCal, and his two-week tour is barrelling through town just in time—if there ever was a band made for slow summer sunsets, the Blank Tapes would surely be it. Catch Adams and co. while you can.
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THE BLANK TAPES PLAY OPEN, 144 LINDEN AVE., LONG BEACH, (562) 499-OPEN; WWW.ACCESSOPEN.COM. FRI., 8:30 P.M. DONATION REQUESTED. ALL AGES.