Sunday, May 20, 2012

Molehill - The Dirty Jacks - lushfarm -- Red Palace - May 19 2012

lushfarm - Earnest rock is the first thing that comes to my mind when this Baltimore trio starts playing. They have a reasonable take on the jangly side of indie rock. Only a few subtle moves are standing out like the way the drummer varies from soft to hard strikes as needed. They do add some  really nice heavy moves at times which livens things up nicely. They would have fit comfortably into the post Husker Du/Dinosaur Jr. scene that developed a few decades back. "Paranoid" finished things up, but it was not THAT "Paranoid", although I did detect some chord patterns from Led Zeppelin's "The Rover". All in all, a decent start to a small crowd that was a little slow to build on this Saturday night.

The Dirty Jacks - This local quintet has a rhythm section, bass, lead guitar, keyboards and a singer/part time rhythm guitarist. They hit the ground running hard with a blasting revved up pop-rock burner that whips the growing crowd into a hot mood. It seemed that there may be no direction to go but down and that was the case. It was not a free fall, as they continued playing solid rockers, but they fell into simpler patterns of good barroom pop-rock that was still well suited for a weekend crowd. The sound was a bit like a combination of Midnight Hike and the Riverbreaks (to actually reference some local bands for a change). It was not always moving me much, but I appreciated their intensity. And the closer brought things back up close the level of the opener, which proves they clearly know their strong songs.
Molehill - This Chicago quartet possesses a big sound and has a nice look as well. I was familiar with many of the songs as I reviewed their recent album here. The sound remained the same with high quality keyboard work, shimmering guitar moves, high powered drums, and steady bass moves (with strings that looked like green glowsticks). I have heard the progressive genre mentioned with Molehill, but they are far more modern than any hearkening back to the early 70s. The quality keyboards and cool light columns may have you thinking prog, but modern rock, shoegaze touches, classic powerful rhythms mix together in a very satisfying final blend. The sound is slick, but not at all contrived, thus remaining accessible and fun. They banged out 41 minutes of music with few breaks and kept the atmosphere charged for the good sized crowd that finally made its way into the club. They appear to be a band that is capable of turning a few heads if they can keep getting the gigs. They certainly have command of a sound that is familiar enough, but personal enough to draw in a lot of rock music lovers.

Quote of the Day: Well, European soccer is over for now (with a whole 19 days off until UEFA Euro starts) and since big money Chelsea (owned by Russian oil baron Roman Abramovich) overtook Bayern Munchen on penalties yesterday, I will quote from Bayern's austerity loving owner, Uli Hoeness...

"I get angry every week when I go to buy petrol,' fumed Hoeness. 'The oil mafia takes money out of my pocket to invest it in footballers. For me this stinks to high heaven and I include Mr Abramovich in all this...Mr Abramovich has put £900m into Chelsea. If he pulls the plug on them, you'll be able to pick the club up for the price of a puzzle magazine from a newsstand"

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