Kate Moran Band - It was a little light on the band as Kate Moran had an acoustic guitarist playing behind her vocals. But that hardly mattered, as Kate Moran displayed a nice songwriting touch through her vocals and the guitar work. There was nothing too revolutionary here, but it worked well. Some of it got lost in the noise as a really large crowd was shuffling in throughout the set, but that was to be expected at a CD release party. Maybe that's were a fuller band would have helped. There were enough people focused in to enjoy this 33 minute opening set and I heard enough to say I would gladly see them again some time.
Brittany Jean - I have long been a fan of Brittany and Brittany Jean, which as she explains IS a band. And I could not agree more, as there was a nice full sound tonight from the drums, electric guitar, guest bass, acoustic guitar and of course vocals. Brittany seemed a bit excited and nervous tonight as a lot of friends were here for the CD release party in a comfortable, yet crowded room. The excitement/nerves were converted positively into boundless energy which made this perhaps the best Brittany Jean set I have seen to date. Her vocals were powerful when needed and pulled back when the song dictated. She has all the energy and style of an Ani DiFranco and artists of that ilk, and the songs hold up as well. The band can really push the songs out to rock levels where things almost get a bit Joplin-esque (although I may be fairly accused of having Janis Joplin in my thoughts far too much this past year). The songs kept coming and the variety among rockers and quieter folk-rock numbers was perfect to sustain a set lasting 65 minutes. The guest bassist, Kevin de Souza, was allowed a song which was actually less interesting, but the band may not have had it rehearsed as much as needed. His bass playing was the important part and was excellent throughout, as it was a nice add to the Brittany Jean band sound. This band has all the ingredients to do big things around here or anywhere. Hopefully this fine EP will get some notice and the shows will keep coming.
Quote of the Night: Brittany... "We have a surprise after this song (guest bassist), so don't leave yet--Don't leave because of my talking."