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First Chair, May 14 at The Olympic

Find out why this band is first in its class


The Olympic venue shows just how grown up it is with a diverse weekend lineup starting Friday, May 13, with sludge-metal duo The Body (see Page 16) followed by local drum-and-piano pop duo First Chair celebrating the release of its debut EP, Weights of the World (self-released, May 2016) on Saturday, May 14.

Their band isn't much older than the almost-1-year-old Olympic, but First Chair's Lanae Alvis (keys, vocals) and Rase Littlefield (drums) have found their groove, which is layered indie-pop. Alvis' voice is as much a First Chair instrument as the duo's keys and piano, and she effortlessly shifts from low, breathy tones to diaphragm swelling high notes like a dragster drifting around a corner. First Chair embraces unconventional lyrical content—"Sunshine" is a reflection on Alvis' visit to a concentration camp—and emotional intensity. Though the tracks on Weights come in a little heavy (the longest is 6 1/2 minutes), Alvis and Littlefield give each second an authenticity that comes from being passionate about what they do. Maybe that's why they're first.