by John Miller
Kinsey - There must be some apprehension one feels before opening for a sold out show. A room that is barely full and a crowd, clearly waiting for anything else. Kinsey clearly does not share any of the apprehension I am projecting. The room is a third occupied but they are clearly up to the task of opening for the Cold War Kids even if the crowd isn’t. As the audience slowly trickles in, they play slow acoustic pieces accented by interesting secondary instruments.
It's a small three piece, they don't take up too much space and clearly very casual; an upright bass, a trumpet, and the lead, Nick Kinsey is pulling double duty; an acoustic and bass drum that he pounds away on has he strums his major chords. The trumpeter adds a wonderful accent to these pieces. He plays a significant part in keeping these songs moving and fresh. Having a competent brass section can be something difficult to pull off but Kinsey does it right; it adds to the compositions without making them sound older than they are and it certainly doesn't overpower them either; meaning that the addition doesn't necessarily cause the rest of the band to lean on it for a particular sound. It's a complement.
Nick Kinsey keeps it light in between songs, trying to keep this anxious audience engaged with in prompt to question and answer sessions; they live in Brooklyn (surprise) and are fans of Ben & Jerry's. At one point, he switches to finger picking and it reminds me briefly of Elliott Smith, but only briefly as his confident vocals are a far cry from Smith’s depressive and disassociated style. As the set comes to a close, they seem to have won over the crowd as with each song the crowd’s approval grows.
(Editor--Cold War Kids headlined, but was not reviewed)