I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. I met up with Nathan Curtis around quarter of 9 and we drove to Winooski. We were in and settled about 9, chatted briefly with Chris Farnsworth about how his band was going to play Yes covers a half time off and call themselves Maybe, and shortly after that Zeus Springsteen hit the stage. Chris played electric guitar and sang mostly backing vocals, and was joined by Josh Shedaker on bass and backing vocals and David Evans on lead vocals and drums. The music began with some heavy rocking riffs and I felt like I knew the song. As soon as the lyrics kicked I realized it was the Lobot song Lights Of Montreal. I made the connection of seeing Dave play in the band Somah so many years ago and Lobet more recently and realized how great the show was going to be. It did not disappoint. Dave is a great songwriter and has a charming and unique voice and all of the songs sounded great and rocked hard. I did not know most of the songs so I just listened and let them move me. The fourth song was short and fast and might have been called Turnaround. Chris had made a few Yes jokes from the stage at the beginning so before the fifth song when he said the next would be an Elton John cover I assumed he was kidding. They played a blisteringly intense over the top version of Madman Across The Water that made me happy that I was wrong. The next song was a fun ditty about how Jody is A Robot. It was slow and searing for most of the song but rocked hard for some of it. They played a few more, including My Funeral and closed the set with an unrelenting rocker that just kept driving and driving with no let up until it crashed into the ending. This was my first time seeing this new band but will not be my last.
Up next was a band that only exists in Austin Texas or Winooski Vermont. Cave Bees hit the stage with their buzz saw punk rock. The songs have nice melodies but have a steady grind to them and sound great. With Steve Tremblay on electric guitar and vocals, Rebekah Whitehurst on bass, Frank Zee on drums and Creston Lea on electric guitar they rocked hard. They opened with I Need A Raise then kept rocking with Round Sum. Mine All Mine followed then they played a newer one called Juliet. They went back to their album with Sweet Pussy and an incredible version of The Lunacy. The next song was Kick The Can then they played a couple that I did not know, but really liked. Muskrat Love was a little heavier than usual then they played another one that I missed the title of but totally loved. 22R followed and rocked hard then they played a blistering version of Golden Goose. They closed with another newer song and I was blissfully happy.
It between sets it was nice to chat with Luke Awtry, Eric Olsen, and Linda Bassick, but soon enough, it was time to rock again. Black Rabbit hit the stage with their punk/garage rock music. With Trevor Jewett on drums, Darlene Scarano on bass and backing vocals and Marc Scarano on electric guitar and lead vocals they kept the night at the same hard rocking level set by the bands before. They opened with Mark My Words and followed with The Original Original. They went back to the first EP for Neutrino then rocked out Sayonara. They played a couple that I don’t know well enough yet, but really like, then welcomed us to their Neighborhood. Black Cat crept in next and was followed by the classic Tibbar Tibbar. Nicky Says rocked hard then Marc picked up the flying V for a song I did not recognize. Blue Sky followed with it’s cheery chorus then BS Passes was played a little extra hard. Rotten Egg has some cool hooks then they wrapped the night intensely with Carnage. They were as brilliant as always and I was so happy to be there for it.
What an incredible night of music.
Black Rabbit at the Monkey House August 20 2016 pic by Tim Lewis