Archive for the ‘The Monkey House’ Tag

Plastique Mammals, Ruckzuck, and Floral Amoral at Nectar’s May 22, Ruckzuck at Radio Bean May 22nd, and Ruckzuck at The Monkey House May 23, 2017   Leave a comment

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last Monday and Tuesday at three venues in town. It began a few months ago when singer Faith Kelly posted a question in the Facebook group Vermont music live and I replied and we chatted a bit. I listened to her band Ruckzuck, liked the sound, and put a note on the calendar that they were playing at The Monkey House on Tuesday.

As the show approached I realized they would play three shows in two days and decided to go check out the first show and see what it was like. On Monday, May 22nd, I worked from 11:30-8, dropped my stuff at home then took the lovely walk down to Nectar’s. There was a duo on stage as I got in and settled. Plastique Mammals are a keyboard/bass player and drummer and have a trippy sound. The songs start slow as they build loops then tend to get crazy by the end. Keyboard parts get added to the mix. Bass riffs get added to the mix. At one point he played a wicked bass solo into the mix and added another one over the top. I only caught five songs but their mini epics were fun to experience.

 

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Plastique Mammals pic by Tim Lewis

Up next Ruckzuck took the stage. With Mack Bedo on drums, Nick Bedo on guitar and Faith on keys and vocals, the band had a hypnotic flow to their music. They opened by saying “Welcome to the Spaceship” and dove into a fun spacey jam. They stayed there for the second song then rocked hard on Alan’s Garden. The fourth song was more poppy and Faith played the reverb soaked Ukulele to tremendous effect. The band closed the set with an over the top huge song that made me swoon.

 

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

I hung out for a bit as Floral Amoral took the stage. With a singer/electric guitar player, electric guitar player, bassist and drummer they had a low-fi indie psychedelic sound that was really fun. The second song was more of a rocker and the third jammed hard. The clock said it was time to go to the next show so I sadly left. It was a quiet night in town and as I walked up Main st and took the turn up Church st I could hear their music flowing all over downtown.

 

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Floral Amoral pic by Tim Lewis

I arrived at Radio Bean just after the midnight start time but the band were still loading in. I got in and settled and soon enough it was time for Ruckzuck’s “second set”. They opened with a song about what goes on in your mind and it was easy to dive back into their spacey grooves. The second song had a bit of a Hawkwind flow and I was in a happy place. The next couple had more of a pop feel then they played another epic where Faith’s voice reached for the stars and Mack’s drumming became hypnotic. Nick laid in some cool rhythms as the keys flowed their way through the songs. They wrapped up around 1am then it was time for the short walk home.

 

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

 

I chatted with Nathan Curtis at work and said the two shows were fun and he said he was up for checking them out. I worked until 9:30 and we met up and headed to The Monkey House. Despite the rotary in Winooski being partly closed, we somehow got in and parked and walked in as Ruckzuck were starting their set. We had missed Floral’s opening set, but what can you do. I headed to the front and got right back into the groove. The songs have a hazy spacey flow and my body just seemed to remember where they would go. I couldn’t tell if the second song was really long or if it flowed into the third but I was in a happy place as the music washed over me. At some point Nate had called another coworker, Billy Greer, and he showed up and checked out some of their set. The band did another killer rocking version of Alan’s Garden with a long rocked out ending. Faith played the ukulele for the next song and a kazoo through a heavily reverbed mic for the next one. The effect was beautiful. They took a chance and played a brand new song and I’m so happy they did. It was wonderful. They wrapped the night with an over the top epic rocker that made me swoon.

We hung out and chatted with the band for a bit then Nathan dropped me at home. It’s amazing how easy it was to catch all three shows and Ruckzuck are so much fun, it made me want to keep coming back. Hopefully, they will journey this way again.

 

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

 

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Ruckzuck pic by Tim Lewis

 

The Ryan Ober Band, The Nancy Druids, and Gold City Ashes at The Monkey House April 1, 2017   Leave a comment

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The Nancy Druids pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. I met up with Nathan Curtis just before 9 and we drove to Winooski and got settled in.

It was not long before Ryan Ober picked up his electric guitar and started playing and singing. Joined by Creston Lea and Jeremy Frederick on drums, the trio rocked out some bluesy songs with a pop edge. The first song was about loving a girl for a long time and Creston kept asking what her name was. The second was a rocker called What Is Life? Ryan had a ripping solo at the end and played so powerfully that the stage could not hold him. They played a few of Ryan’s new songs and covers like Dylan’s To Be Alone With You and a rocking version of Ray Charles’ Sticks And Stones. Ryan’s song Caveman Blues was pretty fun and had a bit of an Elvis Costello vibe. They closed the nine song set with Ryan’s tale about how his friends say he can’t get away from the blues, and fun was had by all.

 

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The Ryan Ober Band pic by Tim Lewis

 

During the set Nathan met and chatted with Star and we hung out close to the stage and rocked out as The Nancy Druids weaved their magical spell. Their melodic indie music rocked hard and sent shimmering vibes through the club. They opened with Sky and we were off and running. With some snow outside on an April night, December still seemed appropriate. Halo has a great bass riff from John Franklin, powerhouse drumming from Ann Mindell and Sean Toohey sent the solo into a feedback guided blissful universe. By Design was super catchy and The Space Between was gorgeous and a little extra fun considering the Facebook post I did earlier in the day that threaded the space between a secret and a lie. They pulled out the brand new song Icicles, I think that’s what it’s called, and it was pretty great. The stomp rock of Just Another Day kept us grooving and Might Have Been had a wicked guitar effect at the end. They closed the set with a song that may be called Who You are and it had more great Ann drumming and a colossal ending. The Druids always make me happy when they play.

 

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The Nancy Druids pic by Tim Lewis

 

The set break was a little longer than the first one, but we hung out in the front as Canadian band GOLD CITY ASHES took the stage. They are an electric guitar/singer, bass, drums trio and had a classic rock sound. Nico had a great bounce to his drumming, Chris played a lot of leads with a slide and Lynn’s bass playing was just amazing. It was mesmerizing to watch her play. Chris was an engaging front man and was very welcoming and appreciative. His voice was nice and the songs rocked hard. The first couple had a nice stomp to them and the third song had a big bluesy feel. The next couple kept us rocking hard then they got into a jam with California Love, They tossed a little roll away the dew in the middle, then went back to the hard rock. Later in the set they played a heavy version of After The Gold Rush that made me smile. They wrapped the 15 song set with a rocker that had space for each member to do a short solo and ended with a blistering song called Big Brother which had an epic set up, a hard rocking middle and a Judas Priest ending.

We hung out and said Hi to the band then Star took off and I caught a ride home from Nathan. It was yet another wonderful night of music and was great to make some new friends.

 

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Gold City Ashes pic by Tim Lewis

Cricket Blue, Silver Bridget, The Parts, and Phil Yates & The Affiliates at The Monkey House March 19, 2017 Show Up Shows vol 2   Leave a comment

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Cricket Blue pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. The show was set to go from 6:30-10 and I had to work until 7. It was a benefit for Planned Parenthood and is part of a series of shows to benefit worthy organizations put on by The Monkey House and Sean Hood.

I got out of work at 7 on the dot and ran over to the Monkey. I assumed I would miss one of the four bands but would be happy to catch what I could. Cricket Blue were on stage and playing as I got settled in and said hi to Jeremy Gilchrist. I wasn’t listening with full attention but still liked the sound of the new song they were playing. I got into focus mode and loved the guitar and vocal interplay on Quiet pt 2. They followed with Ode To Billy Joe and wrapped up the set. I missed a few songs but was happy with what I caught.

 

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Cricket Blue pic by Tim Lewis

 

The emcee of the night, Annie Russell, got up and plugged Planned Parenthood and encouraged people to vote in the silent auction with poise and humor. I think she began the night with a stand up set, which was what let me catch a couple of Cricket songs.

Up next Silver Bridget took the stage. Matt Saraca rocked the electric guitar while John Townsend formed the rhythms with acoustic guitar and kick drums and Johnnie Day Durand‘s musical saw soared over the top. They opened with Heart Of Gold then brought us to The End Of The World. And I Love Her was sweet then we went out to the Blue Bayou. They capped the set with Nowhere Man and the quiet and appreciative crowd was well pleased.

 

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Silver Bridget pic by Tim Lewis

 

Annie came up for more announcements then made way for Danny LeFrancois and The Parts. Danny sang and played electric guitar and was joined by Steve Sharon on drums and Jason Pappas on bass. They opened with a heavy rocker that showcased Danny’s deep guitar sound. Driving All Alone was second and rocked hard too. The third song was a rocker about drinking and the fourth was a fast Irish ditty about a liquor store. The mellowed out for It’s A Shame and were joined by a fiddle player. I think his name was Jake. They brought Sean up to sing the next one and a distant memory made me cringe. It proved to be unfounded as Sean sang the heck out of a gorgeous song about Berlin after the wall or Oklahoma at dawn, or something like that. He stayed on stage for a cover of Achy Breaky Heart and that was the one I was worried about. It was fun and the audience liked it, so that was cool. After that, they called it a night.

 

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The Parts pic by Tim Lewis

 

Annie came back and announced the auction winners then Phil Yates & The Affiliates hit the stage hard and loud. They played a blistering Co-Pilot and kept rocking with My Favorite Bag. They eased up for the gorgeous If Only I Was Lonely then went back to full on rock for my new favorite song Send Him The Bill. They kept rocking with Burn It Down Bernadette and played one of the most intense versions of Little French Earthquakes that I’ve heard. They capped the night with Ninjas Vs Zombies and I was in a happy place.

I headed out pretty quickly and took the long happy bunny chasing walk home

 

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Phil Yates & The Affiliates pic by Tim Lewis

 

The Dirty Blondes, Swillbillie, and Crazyhearse at The Monkey House March 11, 2017   Leave a comment

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Dirty Blondes pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. It was a long work day that I made a bit trickier than ideal, but the numbers feel into line at the end, so that was cool. I went home, ate dinner and contemplated the cold temperature and lovely wind. i knew the show was going to be hot so I bundled up and took the long walk to Winooski.

I got in and settled and chatted with Miller about music for a while then the Dirty Blondes hit the stage. From the opening strains of Burn, Chris Clark and Ornan McLean were completely locked in and drove the heavy rhythm while Jesse Azarian ripped out some sweet guitar leads. Becky Rogers and Diane Sullivan sang well and engaged the attentive crowd with joy. They had us do the Kung Pao then screamed out the story of the Scorned Woman. They turned us on with their love on Oh Dirty Blondes then made sure we were all Drunk. They were pretty emphatic about that new guy not being James Bond and the band played a killer extended outro for the song. This made us shower praise on them and we all sang Hallelujah. They pulled out a new song that was really good. I’m not sure if it is Bernie Sanders has our back or Bernie Sanders is a lot like you, but either way, the message was clear. They got a little extra dirty for Slut and Jackin’ Off then praised one of the greatest drummers ever in Ornan. They were going to wrap the night with a ferocious Yayo but in the late middle Eros finally arrived so they played the Kung Pao for her to close the night. She’s a huge fan of the band so it was very appropriate.

The set break was not long and Swillbillie hit the stage. The guitar/singer, bass, drums band rocked hard with a swampy country edge. They played songs about the Devil, whiskey and chickens and were lots of fun. They ran the first three songs together before settling in and chatting with the audience a bit. Richard Bailey is a good singer and a fun front man. They sang songs about the devil coming after me and whiskey high and rolling on. They rocked hard and loud for about an hour and played 14 super fun songs. They ended with a bluesy song about a milk cow followed by the tale of a rooster in the morning when you’re trying to sleep. It was my first time seeing them and hopefully, I’ll get back to see them again soon.

 

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Swillbillie pic by Tim Lewis

 

I chatted with Miller and some of his friends during the set break but when I heard the opening strains of Demon Moon I headed back to the band. Crazyhearse rocked the hell out of the song and the crowd was happy. With a guitar/singer, guitar, bass, drums lineup they had a country tinged gypsy rock feel. The band are tight and talented and a pleasure to listen to. They kept us rocking for a bit then David Kloepfer traded his guitar for the electric banjo. The next two songs had an epic feel and I was elated. He switched back to electric guitar and rocked the next one nicely. They brought up a singer who’s name I missed and his bluesy gravelly voice sounded great. The song was something about being asleep when I’m dead. A cover of John Fogerty’s Old Man Down The Road was fun but the next song had a jam in the middle that got the whole front of the room dancing hard. They brought the power up to full blast for Windigo and kept it there for the closing Oklahoma Road Rage.

I was tired and knew the next day would be long, so I headed out quickly and took the long cold happy walk home.

 

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Crazyhearse pic by Tim Lewis

Posted March 15, 2017 by tmusicfan in Rock Shows

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The Nancy Druids at The Monkey House February 7, 2017   Leave a comment

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The Nancy Druids pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time seeing music last Saturday at The Monkey House. I met up with Mary Wolcott just about 9 and we hung out for a bit until The Nancy Druids hit the stage. They opened with the lovely refrain of The Sky Is All Around Me Now and the shimmering pop rock filled my soul. They followed with the steady stomp of Just An Ordinary Breakdown Day which has some lovely changes and such a nice flow to the song. Disappear has a great verse and chorus and towards the end they go into the title section and the word disappear floats happily. I did not know the name of the next one, since none are recorded yet but the lyric about life is wasted on the things you know is pretty cool. I’ve seen most of their shows but they surprised me with a brand new song that was pretty sweet. They kept rocking hard on The Space Between and Sean took off on an epic guitar workout at the end. At that point an unruly customer had to be escorted out by the bar staff so attention focused away from the band for a bit. They waited it out and as attention came back to them they played the song about January Looking For December. This brought the full attention of the audience back and the band pulled out a staggering version of The Sign. The next one was the song about the walk through the park and it was glorious. The bombastic Halo followed and featured another Sean guitar workout and killer drums from Ann Mindell. Bassist John Franklin, who’s Rickenbacker playing sounded perfect all night, introduced a story about waking up from a fevered dream to realize he was infatuated with ’80’s Olivia Newton-John. The band played a fun version of Xanadu that was more rehearsed than the impromptu version they played last time. They returned to their own songs for an amazing Remember Who You Are and Falling sounded wonderful too. They capped the night with Leonard Cohen’s Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye. There is something about the music of the Druids that works for me on almost every level and I feel very fortunate to be able to see them as often as I do.

After the show we chatted with Molly King and Lauren from Rapid Fire Magazine. Aside from the disturbance in the middle, it was another brilliant night of music.

 

Posted February 10, 2017 by tmusicfan in Rock Shows

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The Monkey House 10 year anniversary party December 17, 2016   Leave a comment

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Colin Clary and Friends pic by Tim Lewis

 

I had a great time celebrating the 10 year anniversary of The Monkey House a couple of Saturday’s ago. I had to be up a bit early for work but got out at 4:30 then went home to eat dinner and settle for a bit. A little after 6 I headed out the door and took the long walk to Winooski.

When I arrived Parmalee was on stage. He played keys and bass and sang. Most of the songs had an electronic dance beat though everything moved and breathed enough to not be too easy to spot. A couple of the songs had huge builds to them and I really enjoyed those parts. I caught six of his songs including one about not passing it off on somebody else, and one about running like a dog. The third one I caught was especially drifty and dreamy and was my favorite. He closed the set with a Parmaga cover that went something like “I will take no more than I make.” His set was really good and worth looking into for the future.

 

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Parmalee pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then Phil Yates & The Affiliates hit the stage hard. Their short set was blisteringly fast and super fun. They opened with Burn Burn Burn then played a couple of cool new ones. Ninjas Vs Zombies was great as always and they kept the pace at full throttle with Burn It Down Bernadette. The eased up a tiny amount for the gorgeous She Has Your Name and closed fast and furious with Little French Earthquakes. What a great set!

 

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Phil Yates and The Affiliates pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then Colin Nicholas Clary and friends hit the stage. Sometimes their music is on the gentle side but that night they put the core in Cuddle Core. The whole set rocked hard and I loved every moment. I don’t think I knew any of the songs but like them all. The eleven short songs included ones about sanctuary cities, goody goody gumdrops, and being almost as cute as I used to be. They closed with a rocker about how everybody’s falling apart these days. It was a terrific set of music.

 

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Colin Clary And Friends pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then Paper Castles hit the stage. Again, I don’t think I knew any of the songs but the band were on fire and played a tremendous show. They played five songs with themes like best friend the end and coincidence & accidents. They had a majestic huge rock sound and closed with the super appropriate song that said “I want you inside this house”.

 

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Paper Castles pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then Tyler Daniel Bean hit the stage. With a heavy indie rock or metal sound they played a furious set of music. The opener was long and heavy and beautiful. Willow I and II were brilliant. I did not know the closer but it rocked super hard. Their set was nothing but brilliant power.

 

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Tyler Daniel Bean pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then SWALE hit the stage. Since all the other bands rocked hard, they stuck to their heavy side for their five song set. They opened with Everyone Likes To then unleashed the brilliant Drug Laws. They rocked hard on a couple of new ones then had a little fun with Youth Against Fascism. They had the lyrics on cards and had a couple of people come up and show the lyric then toss the card away much like Dylan did with the Subterranean Homesick Blues video. It was so great.

 

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Swale pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then In Memory Of Pluto hit the stage. Unfortunately, singer Seth Gallant’s car broke down so bassist Zach Jandl sang for their brilliant set. I did not know any of the songs but loved them all. I think they said they were an alien metal band and rocked out seven powerhouse songs. The opener was about a death ray and the second was about Halloween. Whatever they played, I really liked it.

 

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In Memory Of Pluto pic by Tim Lewis

 

There was a short set break then Blue Button hit the stage. With Jason Cooley singing and playing guitar, they had a three guitar attack to compliment the bass and drums. I’ve seen a few different combinations of the band over the years but I think this was my first with three axes. Their sound was huge and glorious and I loved every moment of the set. They opened with an epic instrumental then rocked out My Bitter End. They played a great new one about City Hall Park then played a blistering We’re Closed. Another great new one followed then they ripped apart Burning Bridges. They closed with a rocking version of Hit but slowed it at the end into a moody bluesy groove. It sounded familiar and I soon realized someone could easily start singing “Let it come on down, in the midnight hour” to it. Amanda Gustafson mentioned that she had never seen them do that, and neither had I.

 

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Blue Button pic by Tim Lewis

 

The sound volume had been creeping up all evening so I moved back a comfortable distance as Dino Bravo VT hit the stage. They rocked hard and loud and opened with an instrumental that reminded me a bit of Drug Laws. They followed with Sugar Coated Candy Stix, then rocked out Pop Music. They teased Cortez The Killer for a bit then settled into Two Car Garage. The harmony guitars of Strawberry Blonde were lovely then they went Past The Mark. They played something about Merry Christmas I Don’t Want To Fight then closed with the Ween classic Birthday Boy.

It was so cool to see so many bands play 30 minute sets. It let each one stretch out a little and still afforded a huge variety of music. The entire night saw the club packed with fun loving people. The club brought in a couple of rounds of free pizza and Ren Weiner brought some of her classic doughnuts. It was a wonderful celebration of a club that has brought lots of great music and community to our lives. Thanks Monkey House!! Keep up the great work!!

 

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Dino Bravo pic by Tim Lewis

 

Grand, Better Things and Carraway at The Monkey House November 26, 2016   Leave a comment

Grand at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

Grand at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

 

 

I had a great time seeing music last night at The Monkey House. It’s the busy time at work, so getting out to see music will be a challenge for the next few weeks. I missed a show I really wanted to see last week due to a very early start time on Saturday morning. Yesterday I worked 7:30am to 4pm then went home and napped for a bit. I missed dinner with my cousins and friends and got myself up and running and was out the door by 8:30. I took the lovely walk to Winooski and arrived right at the 9pm start time. I got in and settled and soon enough, it was time for the show.

I’m usually really good about writing about the shows I see, but I do miss a few. Earlier this year Villanelles played four nights at Nectar’s one month and I wrote up three of them, but newer wrote about the last one. The band that opened last night was called Grand and they blew me away. Last night they opened the show and I had super high expectations and they totally blew me away again. They have a fast indie rock sound with great melodies and changes and the songs are fun to ride along with. They take all the songs in increasingly fun places and feature furious guitar work, sweet vocal harmonies and are really good about engaging the audience. They opened with I Can’t Feel A Thing and it rocked hard. Good Times is a fun party song that is perfect for any rocking occasion. The title song to their EP Another Day Closer To Nothing is infectious in a good way. They claimed that in Vermont, Everybody Wants To Get You High and certainly might be right. They slowed things down a little so the singer could sing about his feelings, then they kicked it into a blisteringly fast pace before easing off at the end. It may have been called Just Couldn’t Say and was kind of epic. The song about putting you down and I’m coming around was really good. They had the bass player begin the one about I’m going out and he set a nice, but not too fast, pace and the guitar and drums locked in with a beautiful fury. They wrapped the night with another fun rocker and left the stage by saying “we were Grand. Thank you”. They really were. If you like rock and roll and you ever get a chance to see them, go!

 

 

Better Things at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

Better Things at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

 

 

Better Things followed with a huge rock sound. All of their songs have a beautiful complexity that are a challenge to follow along with. They never play a lot of songs but each one is a masterpiece of sonic power. Songs ranged from the super-intense Getting Laid In New Hampshire to the slow searing Ex-Files which builds and builds and rocks beautifully. Their set was full of majestic melodic sledgehammer indie rock and I loved every note.

 

 

Carraway at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

Carraway at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

 

 

 

I had seen Carraway once a long time ago and really liked them. I’ve recently gotten their new single and played it a couple of times on my radio show. They released the full album on Friday and last night was the release show. They have an indie rock sound with nice melodies and songs that are lovely to listen to. They opened with the a song from their first EP called Time To Save The World and it sounded great. They lit into the new album, The Bad Year, with the first two songs. Anchor and Lion Tamer both rocked hard and sounded great. They played the fun A Company Man and the endearing I’ve Come To Love. They slowed things down with an acoustic guitar and a bluesy sound for the creepy Cereal then kicked back into the full rock sound for a song that did not make the first EP or the new album, and might not make the next one, but was fun live. They played a song that got the audience singing along then played the super-catchy Last Night. I thought they were going to end the set with the easy to relate to epic The Bad Year but they tossed in a blistering rocker to close the night. Their 14 song set was everything I hoped it would be and I loved every moment.

I headed out pretty soon after the show was done and took the long happy walk home.

 

 

Carraway at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

Carraway at The Monkey House November 26 2016 pic by Tim Lewis

Posted November 27, 2016 by tmusicfan in Rock Shows

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