Waking Windows at the Monkey House, the Stoplight Gallery, and the Winooski Welcome Center, May 10, 2013   Leave a comment

It was a long work day, but at 6:30, I punched out, put on the black, and hiked the tracks to Winooski. I wanted to catch Vedora at 7, and was pleased to see Great Western were on when I walked into the Monkey House. I only caught a couple of songs, but they were just as good as I remember from last week. The songs had a nice feel to them, then completely took off. These guys are really good! After, I chatted with Ryan the singer and Ryan the drummer for a bit.
Vedora took the stage next with a killer version of Sober. I love the build, and Matt ripped it up on guitar. The let loose a wonderful version of Promises, then lit into the really new songs. It’s weird to have seen them so many times, and to still not know the songs, because they are so new. I really like all of them, and can’t wait to get to know them better. A few songs in, Matt broke a string. He kept the song going nicely, but at the end, Ryan (the guitar player for GW) lent Matt his guitar for a song. While playing, Ryan took Matt’s guitar outside and put on a new string. It was ready to go for the next song. I love it when musicians help musicians! They wrapped up the set with Terrarium, and then it was off to pick up my ticket at the Welcome center.
I was greeted warmly by Paddy Reagan, who helped organize the show. I got my WW button, which serves as a ticket, that I had purchased earlier, then wandered farther into the center to catch a few songs by Maryse Smith. After the serious rock and roll from Great Western and Vedora, it was tricky to find the groove of Maryse’s gentle acoustic songs. Her voice has a beautiful tone, and her guitar playing was gently insistent. I had to listen close, and was well rewarded for doing so.
After she wrapped up her set, it was back through the traffic circle, to the Monkey House. Anachronist were playing. The four-piece rocked hard, and kept a smile on my face. The music was straight up rock and they kept me dancing for the whole set. I should find out more about them. They were a lot of fun!

Anders and Kendall picture by Dan Bolles

Anders and Kendall picture by Dan Bolles

At the end of their set, or near the end, I think they were leaving the stage, I went back through the traffic circle to the Welcome center. I saw Steve Hadeka, who told me to enjoy Anders and Kendall. He was heading to the Monkey House to get ready to play. Again, going from the heavy rock of Anachronist, to the acoustic duo was a bit of a shock. There was a huge space between the stage and the audience, so I broke the Burlington semi-circle and stood reasonably close. They are starting a tour, and tonight was the first show. It was hard to get into them, so I just stood, rocked back and forth a bit, and listened. I found several grooves to flow into and was deeply impressed at how good they are. After they wrapped up, it was back to the Monkey House.
Lowell Thompson and band were on. They played some well crafted country rock. Kirk Flanagan was on bass, Steve Hadeka on drums, and Bob Wagner played the lead guitar. Lowell sang and played rhythm guitar, and the very full Monkey House was having a blast. At one point Kelly Ravin and Brett Hughes came to the stage to sing backing vocals.
After they wrapped up, I braved the traffic circle again, but this time went next door to the Welcome Center, to a place called the Stoplight Gallery. I caught a couple of songs by Brattleboro’s Great Valley. The guitar drum duo played some heavy psychedelic rock, and were quite fun. They reminded me a bit of the Vacant Lots, with a lighter tone. They finished way too quickly, so it was back through the circle to the Monkey House.
Monoprix were onstage and rocking. Brett Hughes sang and played guitar, Tyler Bolles played stand-up bass, and the ever present Steve Hadeka held down the drums. Their set was a bit less country than I expected, and had some solid rock to it. I enjoyed every note, and so did the very packed room.
Once again, I went back to the Stoplight Gallery, but only caught a third of a song by Happy Jawbone Family Band, also from Brattleboro. They played some nice edgy rock and roll, but I saw so little, it’s hard to describe. I need to check them out.
Once more, I braved the circle, and went back to the Monkey House. Anders Parker Cloud Badge were getting set to play. Anders, on electric guitar and vocals, was joined by Creston Lea on bass, and Steve Hadeka on drums. They got all set, then went to the back of the room. They returned to the stage with weird fun robes, and lit into the set. The rock and roll was heavy, loud and went in interesting directions. I had to focus to try and keep up. They were nothing but fun, and tossed in a super tight version of Happy Jack in the middle of the set. Knedall Meade added her lovely voice to one song. They wrapped up with something that really rocked and Steve was going crazy on the drums. It was glorious.
After that, I was done. I had settled up earlier, so I grabbed the unneeded coat and umbrella and took the long walk home. It was a magnificent night of music.

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