The Dead Shakers and Bee Bee Sea at The Monkey House July 17, 2018   Leave a comment

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The Dead Shakers pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. I got motivated close to 8 and took the lovely walk to Winooski. I got in and settled and soon enough, it was showtime.

The Dead Shakers took the stage as an eight-piece band with two saxes, drummer, percussionist, bass, guitarist, accordion/horn player, and Kevin Bloom singing, playing guitar and unleashing cool effects. The songs had a chunky funky psychedelic groove that was delightful to slip into. They opened with one that had a David Lynch vibe with occasional outbursts of guitars as Kevin sang take me back where I started. The next one had that lovely groove until the drummer kicked the whole band into full gear and they rocked us hard. There they go. I think the next part was three or four songs run together, but it’s so easy to just get lost in their flow. Lyrics like there are no such things as touchdowns and wish not want not gave way to heavier riffs and maybe the war is coming soon. Kevin kicked off a recording that spoke of the early part of the Shaker movement and they followed with a sweet version of Taung Child. A long jam followed and concluded with the advice to not go surfing. They ended the set with an homage to Kevin’s cat called Superpowers. It’s always a good time when the Shakers take you out for a spin.

I hung out through the set break, then Bee Bee Sea hit the stage with fury. The guitar/vocals, bass/backing vocals, drummer power trio played loud and fast. The music had a classic punk feel but the songs were longer and had a garage rock and surf noir structure and timing. They featured some of the most frenetic guitar playing I’ve sen in ages, and that’s saying a lot. The drummer was just as fast and threw in lots of thrilling fills. The bass player glued the songs into perfect wholes and added nice touches with his backing vocals. I didn’t catch many of the lyrics as I lost myself in the entrancing flow of the songs. The revved up version of Let’s Live for Today was a delight but trying to figure out where they were taking their own songs was the best part of the show. They played for an hour or so then closed with a burst of power that had the guitarist up on one of the amps, a couple of false endings, the drummer in a fun puppy hat, and the guitarist going it alone to end it all. Just for the record, I missed getting a picture of the drummer at the end, so if you want to see it, you will have to show up at one of their gigs. It’s hard to quantify how brilliant they were, but I was in a state of bliss for every moment of the show.

I hung out a bit and chatted with Matthew Kloss and the band as I bought a CD. It’s time to start listening to it and getting to know Seas songs for real.

 

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