Saturday, March 11, 2017

Jesse Malin at Berlin

Jesse Malin has devoted nearly three-quarters of his life to rock and roll. Raised in Whitestone, New York, Malin first entered the East Village music scene at age 12, attending the all-ages hardcore punk shows at CBGB's and becoming the vocalist for a hardcore band, Heart Attack. After the band split in 1984, Malin sang with a string of projects while working as a gas station attendant, a health food store clerk and a "man with a van." From 1991 to 1999, Malin tasted nominal success with the glam-punk band D Generation. Malin then sang in several short-lived bands, then went solo in 2001. Malin's most recent albums, New York Before the War and Outsiders, both were released in 2015. Committed to the community where he found his musical calling, Malin is a partner in the Bowery Electric music venue and the Niagara bar in the East Village.

Jesse Malin headlined two nights at Berlin, a rock club he helped launch in 2015. Normally a high-energy performer that makes full use of larger stages, Malin was unable to restrain himself to the venue's small stage and super-bright, super-red lighting; he ventured through the crowded floor space to the other side of the room and stood on top of the bar for a couple of songs. Between songs, Malin spoke about matters close to his heart, and his songs were equally confessional. The music was all about what happens when gut feelings are empowered by rock and roll and vice versa. Malin's performance was a driving expression of the meaning he has found in life, and it was honest and pure. It was no wonder why he sang virtually the entire set with his eyes closed, hugging the microphone stand as if it was his most loyal friend.

Visit Jesse Malin at