Wedding Dress - This Chicago quintet has a comfortable sound, but there are some interesting choices they make. A couple of guitars, keyboards, and a rhythm section is basic enough, but I really liked the way the keyboards laid down an electronic organ sound underneath of everything with only rare forays into synth runs. There was punch in the rhythm section and guitars were ringing and strong without being too overpowering. The vocals were soft and thoughtful and brought a pop mentality as the band comfortably rocked underneath. So basically, there were three layers of sound that integrated well into a pop-rock format that kept it warm and comfortable throughout there set. When their songs had just a bit of extra push, I felt they really nailed this concept down. Nice opening set and I am happy to see a really good band result from a member of Maps & Atlases, which had the talent, but was one I never cared for.
Maritime - Right away this seems to be an excellent tour pairing, as this twin-guitar quartet takes a similar concept but pushes it forward into a more assertive and expected brand of power-pop. No keys, so the guitars are firing at more pace and volume, with more assertive vocals on top. Yet the warm pop sensibility links everything up nicely tonight. This band can take the power pop into some pretty ferocious rock with some exciting lead guitar work as well. There are touches of synthesizer from the lead guitarist on a few songs, but it is mostly straight ahead and easy to get into, which the large crowd tonight does. Fans of the Jet Age and Sloan should spend some time with this Milwaukee outfit, they won't take long at all to dig in to this.
Quotes of the Night: I was going to grab a bite at the DC9 downstairs prior to the show, but the bar was mobbed with a crazy group of mostly women in pink, as I gathered from my walk in there some sort of breast cancer awareness pub run or something. So I sat down waiting for the show to open upstairs and planned to eat up there. I had my nose in a book at a tiny booth, when one woman dancing in the aisle moved my way and was working that booty quite close to my face or book. After a bit of my poker faced reaction, a friend of hers politely asked...
'Did you notice what was going on?'
'Yes I did.'
'(laughs) and you weren't distracted?'
'Of course I was distracted. I am quite observant, I just try not show it (I also wanted to see how far she would take this).'
Later (after DC9's friendly owner rescued me and got me upstairs a little early), Maritime added... "That is quite the Breast Cancer Awareness event going on tonight... So they will have less breast cancer as a result... although more cirrhosis."
Ouch, I had the same dark thought earlier.