Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Lindsey O'Brien Band, New Transit and a.k.a. Belle @ Neurolux (9/28/12)

This show interested me because it marked a promising new development for Go Listen Boise.  They'd set this up in collaboration with SpokesBUZZ, a Fort Collins, CO organization that does for that town pretty much what GLB does for this one (i.e. promotes and encourages live music and events).  For details on how this show came about, you can check out this Facebook event page.  Hopefully, this relationship will lead to some more cool shows around these parts in the near future.

I counted a little over twenty people when a friend and I got down to Neurolux.  It didn't get much larger than that, but happily, everyone there seemed to get into the music.

a.k.a. Belle kicked off the show.  If this group ever puts out a live album, they oughtta leave space for some on-stage banter--it's always a hoot hearing them crack jokes and talk smack about each other (the bandmates with the same last name do most of the latter).  Not that they didn't cut it music-wise: Chris Galli's jazzy basswork made "Flyin' Song" glide, Sam Merrick's guitar injected some ragged glory into "At Least I'm Stupid" and their new drummer swung and swaggered throughout.  Meanwhile, Catherine Merrick and Kayleigh Jack sounded as warm, thoughtful and lovely as ever, and special guest Thomas Paul pitched in with some tasteful banjo and mandolin.

After a.k.a. Belle came local band New Transit.  Maybe seeing the Old 97's last month conditioned my ears, or maybe anticipation of their ambassadorial Fort Collins gig made them step up their game.  Whatever the reason, these guys sounded a lot more rockin' than I remembered from the Nicki Bluhm concert.  In fact, between Dave Manion's sharp solos, Thomas Paul's terse fills and their tough, grounding rhythm section, they kinda reminded me of the Stones at a couple points.  Sean Hatton's light, sensitive croon rested atop the train and picked off its targets as they zipped by.

The Lindsey O'Brien Band played last and made quite the first impression.  This Fort Collins group rocked hard enough to earn a Led Zeppelin cover and laid down a groove funky enough to earn an Aretha Franklin cover.  Lindsey O'Brien's high, strong voice, P-Mann's scorching guitar, Dave Clapsaddle and Chris Nicholas's soulful horns and Craig Fowler and Pete Knudson's steady-rolling bass and drums got a good chunk of the small crowd dancing.  Hopefully, those folks'll bring a few friends the next time this group rolls through.

You can find info on these groups, Go Listen Boise and SpokesBUZZ on Facebook and elsewhere online.

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