I’m bitter right now. Well, anyone that knows me would attest to the fact that is generally the case, but I have good reason this time. As good a time as I had Saturday night, February 12 at the last show from The Other 49, the fact is it was the last show. I don’t like it when good bands go bye-bye. The Grammys were proof there are many other bands that should go away.
But hey, this was a great night of music, four locals that provide more proof the Valley of the Sun has a vital and excellent scene right now.
Factories led off the evening with a nice set of New Order (in my opinion) inspired indie-pop. I would love to see this band add a drummer, I think it would really expand their sound quite a bit. The tri-vocal delivery was very cool. They are on the right track, good set!
I saw Tugboat last year at The Rogue open another show for The Other 49. They were good on that evening. They are exponentially better now, and the guys I sat with during the show were impressed as well. Tugboat delivers a pretty nifty style of indie rock that never sounds the same from one song to the next. A great characteristic because it kept things interesting the whole time. One of my buddies was pretty convinced that at least a couple of the five members of Tugboat had played in the band back in their school days. That would make sense because there is a unique sense of professionalism with these guys. Keep it up!
Source Victoria was up next and delivered a typical strong set of dream pop inspired indie rock. Mostly newer material was played, hoping to see these songs find their way on to disc soon. “Nobody Knows But Me” sounded as epic as ever. As many times as I have seen these guys play I like the fact it is never the same set from one show to the next. Source ended their set with two tracks from The Fast Escape, “Opportunistic” and “Burn the Pianos”. Nice!
“Our songs are so long, so it’s hard to play a long set.” Those were the words spoken to me by Kes after their show. Yep, you are right about that my friend! Too bad most people don’t “get it” when it comes to music like this. The mainstream world of pop music wants nice, simple songs that clock in around three minutes in length. Bands like The Jam are the exception to the rule that pop music has to be contrived and lame.
No, The Other 49 are not a pop band. These guys deliver some epic indie rock, music designed to destroy the senses and make one think. I truly love this band and will miss seeing them play because it was always an event. This show was no different in that respect.
The four members of The Other 49 strode onstage and attacked their songs in the same manner they have every time I have seen them, with a controlled fury and passion. I have stated many times the band brings to mind elements of Juno and The Appleseed Cast. I make those comparisons only to point out the way the guitars shimmer from both guitarists, a la Appleseed Cast, and the indie rock / prog rock style of music the band creates a la Juno.
Five of the nine songs played were from the band’s outstanding seven song EP A Cold Open. Go to the official website for The Other 49 and download this bad boy if you do not already have it. Yes, most of you know I hate the idea of free music, but this is a case of the band wanting you to have their music. Do it and then buy any of the guys a drink next time you see them.
I jokingly posted on Aaron’s Facebook page the band better play “Crooks and Cowards” or I would be pissed. Well, they played both parts of the song, “Part I” early in the set and “Part II”, my favorite track from the band, was track number seven. Bassist Bradley Wiatr starts out “Crooks and Cowards Part 2” playing his bass using a violin bow to create an eerie sound and mood, the perfect beginning to this tune. Vocalist / guitarist Andy Bosna came into the mix next and maintained the mood with his unique, delicate style of vocals. I cannot believe I never realized this before, but Bosna has a vocal style that will remind one of Robert Nanna of Hey Mercedes / Braid fame. Thanks to The Bob for pointing this out. 🙂 Once second guitarist Justin Jensen and Kes joined the party the tone for the song had been set and continued to build and build until the explosive climax when Kes nearly destroyed his drum set.
Farewell shows always seem to bring surprises, and The Other 49 delivered a big one on this evening. Song number six was a true oldie, a song from a former band the members were in by the name of The Evidence Manual. The name of the song was “The Shortest Distance” and although it was the first time I had heard it, I could quickly tell that the track was in the same vein as the work I was familiar with from The Other 49. This was a sweet addition to the set and made an already special night even better.
I really do feel for you if you did not take part in this evening. The Other 49 put on one heck of a show and made me wish this was not the end of things. But what an incredible end this was, I hope to see these guys pop up in other projects soon!
One negative, and this has nothing to do with the bands or the venue – BOO TO THE MAJORITY OF THE CROWD! Seriously, if you show up to a concert, shut your mouth when a band is onstage! There is plenty of time to chat amongst yourselves in between bands. This shows such a lack of respect for the artists onstage pouring their energy into delivering the music they took the time to create and practice. If you are commenting about how much you liked a song that was just played or anything else music related like that, great. However, carrying on a conversation totally unrelated to the music while a band is playing and making a point of talking louder so you can be heard means you are LAME. This comment especially applies to those of you doing that during the set of The Other 49. Just saying …
Let’s face it though, that was a minor annoyance in regards to a great evening. Thanks to Factories, Tugboat and Source Victoria for getting the ball rolling, and thanks to The Other 49 for delivering one stellar set of music. I will miss them.