Courtney Barnett | Photo by Joe Del Tufo |

Two up-and-coming acts shimmered their way through diverse sets of music at Union Transfer last night. Each recent Firefly performers, both groups are distinctly positioned for bigger things, and the sold out crowd on a Monday night was a testament to that.

Billed as a co-headlining act, San Fermin opened the show and played a mix of tracks from their self-titled debut peppered with new tracks. The newer tracks seemed stronger, especially with the addition of vocalist Charlene Kaye, who balanced nicely against the baritone of Philly native Allen Tate. I loved the way they used stop-start of horns and keyboards to give an organic electronica feel to some of the tracks. Despite the band’s range, which can sound like combinations of Cousteau, Tindersticks, Fitz & The Tantrums and Fleetwood Mac, the set felt very cohesive and left the full house wanting more. I find it hard to believe that anyone left the Union Transfer without the addictive “Sonsick” ringing in their heads.

Australian guitar phenom Courtney Barnett was another thing altogether. Despite just having two EPs to her name, she was eagerly anticipated after San Fermin cleared the stage. Barnett seems like some combination of old Dinosaur Jr and old Neil Young, raging around the stage in the middle of every song, unpolished but better for it, and with a nice mix of clever wordplay, straight-forward rock and monster guitar solos. She also had a few new songs in her set, but it were tracks like “Avant Gardener,” “David” and “History Eraser” that stuck. As she was at Firefly, Barnett’s live sets are more-energetic, fiery interpretations of her more melodic and studio releases. “David” in particular sounds more in-your-face and immediate performed live.

A great one-two punch of tomorrow’s stars on a Monday night in Philly.