Friday, February 5, 2016

The Cornel West Theory - Time is Fire - The Black Sparks -- MLK Library - Feb 4 2016

The Black Sparks - This is a free show at the library sponsored by the DCPL Punk Archive. And the best way to start this off is with a real punk band playing pretty well into the 1980s harDCore style. The sound is a little murky and the vocals are too high, but I detect some good melodic moves within the opener. Another song had a strong Faith/GI sort of feeling to it which was fun. A couple of their newer cuts did not move me nearly as much. I don't think this was as fully formed as I would have liked, but it had the energy so we are off to a good start.

Time is Fire - Third time is normally the charm, but I liked this band plenty the first and second time I saw them. Now there is a new bassist tonight who did well keeping the flow of this intriguing band. The rhythms are funky and dance-able with guitar lines that work middle eastern moves into rock forms and together create the individual approach that makes these guys special. But don't forget the energetic vocals, which powered atop the music, which was better balanced than the first set. This band is working hard and playing all around town, so check them out soon.
The Cornel West Theory - This is only the second time I have seen this fine local hip hop band and I was quite impressed the first time, which was far too long ago. The band was smoking hot tonight with their two rap vocalists, powerhouse drummer, smooth bassist, and electronics/samples guy. The music mixes power with mystery and the vocalists work off each other in perfect step increasing the drama of their quickly but clearly delivered verbiage. It is great to see these guys still delivering the goods to a sizable crowd, who thoroughly enjoyed this tight well run show. There will be a lot more music here in the King Library in weeks to come and hopefully the bills will continue to be strong, but at a price of 'free', you can have a lot less talent than we had tonight and still enjoy the night.

Quotes of the Night: From the opening set...

Band: "This is a new one"
Crowd Member 1: "Yeah!"
Crowd Member 2: "Yeah!"
Crowd Member 3: "No!"

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