Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Akron/Family / Wand - Rock'n'Roll Hotel - August 11 2009

Wand - Formerly known as Wooden Wand or Wooden Wand and the Skye High Band, basically Wand is just some singer songwriter from Nashville with a guitar and a voice. Sound familiar? Well, he really doesn't sound very Nashville too often and I enjoyed the set a lot more than the early music I heard by him a few years ago when he was lumped in with the freak folk movement. He had a steel and electric guitarist accompany him on most tracks and a steel guitarist from Nashville normally has me locating all exits, but in this case he added more atmosphere and spookiness (courtesy of reverb) to the moody songs of Wand. This was akin to the sound to what Jimmie Wilsey gave to Chris Isaak. All in all, a decent set. I am not ready to jump on the bandwagon, but a good set by a decent song writer is a good start to any evening.

Akron/Family - The first time I have seen them since the retirement of one member. I knew that Seth, the main guitarist was still in the band, but wasn't sure who else was left. Turns out the bassist and drummer remain which is good as it is probably the most potent three piece possible of the original four. All sing lead and harmonize and there was less wholesale instrument switching this time around (compared to two previous sightings at this club). Some electronics and loops, but they pretty much just rocked out as a power trio. And it was indeed powerful. Some folkish elements and vocal bits, but a bit less of the sing along material. The crowd was a little laid back as they noted (although they improved as the night wore on), so that may have lead to a more psyche jam outing. The bass player commented that they were having fun and surprised themselves a bit with the ferocity (forgot the word he used, but that was certainly my impression as well). Excellent set by a band well worth seeing. The crowd was bigger than the first show, but not bigger than the second, so I hope they can catch a few breaks and build their audience some. They deserve it.

Quote of the Night - "I have seen quite a few people take notes in a club but you're the first to do so on a copy of Watchmen". Yes, I almost always have a book or magazine in hand. I just had to bring this graphic novel this time as I had about twenty pages to go prior to hitting the club and absolutely had to finish it. The show started a little late, so the fate of the world was resolved for me. Excellent novel.

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