Kevin Boardman started off what was destined to be a promising evening of local talent with his solo acoustic set of primarily original indie/folk tunes. His clumsy approach to the microphone and his boyish charm completely won over the crowd as the twenty five enthused audience members assisted Kevin with clapping, stomping, and yelling. Throwing in a cover of “Wagon Wheel” never hurt a solo act either. Check out his new EP Build as Russell on his bandcamp.
Veil took the light hearted energy built up by Kevin and shattered them with crashing drums and a distorted electric guitar. Even without the low tones of a bass, the progressive rock duo managed to keep a full sound throughout their set. Both members held their respective instruments down, showcasing some intricate work without getting too flashy. The drums were laced with super tight fill based beats to back the melodic, yet heavy guitar that at times got lost in it’s own distortion. A broken string tested the crowd’s attention span but once they were up and running again they swiftly regained control of the venue and closed out their set on a strong note.
Once again the entire vibe of the show took a dramatic turn once Every Other Country took the stage with their trance beats and light (singular) show. Although this style of music is typically used to provoke buff frat boys and any type of drunk girl to get weird on the dance floor, the sober crowd embraced the beats as much as anyone could expect. The womping sounds produced by any of their five or so keyboards was not something one might expect to be thrown in with a couple of indie bands, but EOC proved that dance beats are universal as the better half of crowd got down like it was a basement rave in Allston. The band announced that they will be taking a break from shows for an indefinite amount of time as they work on a new album, so if you missed this show you might find yourself waiting for a while to see them again.
Where to begin with Speaker For The Dead? Hands down one of the most creative, captivating, passionate and talented group of musicians The Fitchburg Artistree has ever had the pleasure of hosting. The show begins before the music even starts as the fifteen (give or take) members stalk around the stage in body and face paint as if preparing for war. This is not unlike the scene from Hook in which the lost boys ready themselves for battle, only SFTD uses horns, drums, upright bass’ and banjos as their preferred weapons of choice. Their stage presence is intimidating to say they least as they size up the crowd. They make their presence known to the city with an overpowering and beautiful blast of brass, wind, percussion and distortion. The venue erupts as the band and the crowd simultaneously throw away their egos and nerves, as they get down to one of the most innovative expressions of art Massachusetts has to offer. This ragtag group of Worcester based gypsies put together a sound comprised of mainly folk and punk, but with a little more accent and a hell of a lot more character. It’s the sort of music that makes you want to drink moonshine in a southern saloon; or hop a boxcar and pass around a fifth of whiskey. I guess what I’m trying to say is these guys make you want to drink and partake in activities that were socially acceptable at the turn of the twentieth century. And by “you” I mean me.
If you haven’t seen these guys play live yet then it’s time to rethink your priorities. They are currently trying to taking their traveling gypsy caravan over to the welcoming and tolerant country of China. Here is the link to help them get there.http://www.feedthemuse.net/speakerforthedead. I suggest donating some money because let’s face it, they are gypsies and they will get your money one way or the other.
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