Friday, September 2, 2016

Devils Walk as Saints - Famous for a Century -- DC9 - Sep 1 2016

by John Miller

Famous for a Century - I thought it might be slow, I mean the Boss is playing at Nationals Park. I count 13 people here at DC9. It is the unofficial end of summer and I guess everyone isn't quite ready to admit it. That's okay, I for one, am ready for it to be over. Just two bands this evening, both local; Famous For A Century and Devils Walk As Saints. The former is up first, a three piece that plays much louder than their parts. I was only able to catch a portion of the first guitar solo but what I heard was good. It is decidedly geared more towards pop friendly rock but the tone and composition are exceptional. Mostly power chords, though occasionally he adds flourishes by way of sweep picking. And as I mentioned earlier, this is definitely radio friendly, however the songs are composed in such a way that each member is allowed to showcase their individual talents in a way that isn't so vanilla. For instance, while most of the pieces are simple time in regard to time signatures, Dave is able to come up with some pretty nifty beats. Vocally, the range is expansive and though it took some time for him to warm up by the end of set Aly was certainly soaring. 

Devils Walk as Saints - Devils Walk as Saints soon follow; closing out the summer. If interested, they are working on some new stuff which, I have been told, can be found at their SoundCloud page. The three piece begin quietly, fuzz envelops the room before a drum fill signifies the real start of the set. After a quick adjustment to their levels, they begin to play some of their newer pieces. Though still radio friendly, they lean less on the pop elements Famous For A Century did earlier tonight. The drums and more specifically, the fills remind me of early Taylor Hawkins. I'm not sure that you can really go wrong with fills. On more than one occasion, their pieces abruptly stop, two of the members giving way to one to play alone. I wouldn't call it a solo more like a bridge but not in traditional sense. As always, everything sounds excellent tonight at DC9 but there is something missing from the set. The vocals are a little flat and there is almost no banter. In this almost empty room, the lack of energy adds this element of tension. I will say that the tone of both the guitar and bass are on point. Both sound excellent. Devils Walk As Saints make a mention of Failure and for a second I thought a cover may soon follow. Alas that was not the case. Though they did the work for me, and perhaps this is biased (it is) I do hear elements of Failure within their compositions; an alternative sound but an attention to detail that was usually lost in distortion of the mid 90s. Though it was quiet tonight, the two sets were a fun way to mark the end of the season.

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