The Last Year - This Baltimore quartet is new to me and is playing several dates on this tour. They feature strong female vocals in front of a mixture of keyboards, bass, guitar, additional percussion, and drums. I was hearing a more intense Eurythmics at first, but it was more of a bombastic rock sound with powerful throbbing synthesizer and danceable beats. They had loads of energy and a hint at charisma. Still, it seemed like more high spots than deep structure to me, but I think that may be a function of age. This is great music for young energetic people looking to move and they went over pretty well with the crowd tonight in the backstage room. It is early for them with only one EP out at present, so this band may have a chance to focus their noise and make a name for themselves.
Sick of Sarah - This slightly more veteran Minneapolis band has a fine fan base here tonight. They have a Runaways look to their lineup, but their music is more interesting in more of an Alley Cats vein. They could have worked well on the Dangerhouse label with their hook oriented, driving punk sound that has enough pop to it to attract a wide range of rock fans. I liked the way they had a churning quality deep in their song, just grinding out the songs with enough subtle twists to keep me attentive. I did not care for some of the sound quality as it was a bit murky at times, although the sound man sharpened it up as the set went on. The vocals had too much reverb, which did not seem at all necessary and ended up getting lost in some songs, or even echoing off the beat in odd ways. But the energy was good and the music interesting and was worth a listen. I would like to hear more of their recordings and would give it another shot live as well.
Rimshot Quote of the Day: “I called an insurance company to get a quote. They gave me one of Oscar Wilde’s best. -- Jarod Kintz.