Clones of Clones - This local quartet features a twin guitar line-up with a couple of keyboards for occasional use. The rhythm section was steady as the band cooked up an 80s style alt rock sound with some pop melodies in there as well. The lead guitar was quite busy and was generally a highlight for me and gave their music just enough distinction to be interesting, even for those of us that have 'heard it all'. They faded a lot of endings which was kind of anti-climactic, although the last couple of songs were more tight. That would be the one recommendation on what otherwise was a fine opening set, well received by a fairly small crowd.
FLINTface - Interesting band, this. Rather this is a band that features singer songwriter Joe Scorsone with his wife assisting on vocals and a sharp backing band. They have a balanced Americana rock sound that encompasses rural and urban feelings in the manner of Petty, Walkabouts, and many other successful acts. The dynamics in the better songs are achieved with a great sense of subtlety creating a dramatic environment for the vocals. They did a great job and it was nice to see the crowd double and fill out the club into something of an event, even if the usual self absorption blocked some of the contact between band and audience. This is a sharp little outfit worthy of a look and a listen.
The Trews - I enjoyed this Canadian band's album, but was not sure if their rather straight ahead rock format was unique enough. Well, for album listening maybe, maybe not, but a live stage is where music like this thrives. Not only did this band blast away with great playing from all four members, but the lead guitar work had the crowd cheering in ecstasy. Some of the songs also went more into a cool direction in the manner of a T2 or Mighty Baby. The vocals were hearty and could stay on top, although due to a vocal infection, the singer had to dip into his 'magic spray' more than once. The crowd definitely got over their dull conversations and dug in for this set. These guys are touring hard and that is the best way for music like this to get over.
Quote of the Night, or yet another of our series of nasty musician on musician insults (and thankfully the last on Courtney Love)...
22. Kathleen Hanna on Courtney Love
“Where’s the baby? In the closet with an IV?”