Or, how I spent my Thursday night in Downtown Boise.
This was a rare occurrence when staying put at one venue for the entire evening was done out of choice, and not just convenience. I caught five of the six bands that played the El Korah Shrine building last night (hey, a guy has to eat…), and enjoyed each of them albeit to varying degrees. To the recap!
**Apologies in advance for the shitty picture quality – I am a work in progress and the lighting at El Korah is not optimal for amateur photo hour.
This local goofball/musical savant gave us the usual: a rowdy set that included visual delights such as a Santa hat, matching white outfits, and a lady sitting on stage and holding a sign displaying each song title. A bit bizarre, but entertaining as hell. These dudes are proud of their performances, and claim that the reason they are so seldom seen is that they spend so much time preparing for them. The rhythm guitarist’s custom-made Idaho shaped axe was pretty cool also.
I found the wrong Muckers on Spotify, and was not prepared for what we got, which was some amazing guitar shredding a la 70s arena rock greatness from these Brooklyn kids. And I do mean kids: these guys must be around 21, and I would not be surprised to hear that this was their first time touring “out west”. Their vocal quality and lyrics left something to be desired, and their finest moments were their extended jams and instrumental portions. Their lead singer and guitarist was impressive on the six-string, and carried the day for about 40 minutes.
These soulful white boys from Seattle brought a polished and safe brand of music and got the crowd going with their horn assault: a trumpet and not one but two saxophones. I joked later that they reminded me of a mix of John Mayer, Anderson East, and the Mormon tabernacle – and I still like that analogy. So I wrote it on the internet. Just now.
Another set of young up and comers, this time from Philadelphia (where I’m told it is always sunny). Incredible energy, which is a theme of the rock n roll bands involved at Treefort, no doubt a function of their age and stature. Although at times it was a bit plodding and mopey for me (yes, even for me), they certainly can turn it up and rock the house when they want to. They did this on their first and last songs, and left me wanting more of that intense rocking action. Most of the night their spastic lead singer was channeling a definite Robert Smith vibe, which is fine, but they are better suited to rocking the fucking house.
Oh, on the aforementioned closing track, the guitar player decided to play a few licks while surfing the crowd. #rocknroll
Can a band be simultaneously exactly what you expected and surprisingly pleasing? Yes, and Twin Peaks was just that last night. Let me explain… Their sound was as advertised, with a 60s-psych rock influence rooted in power punk melodies, but their energy and musicianship exceeded my expectations.
These kids from Chicago got the chance to headline the El Korah’s Thursday lineup, and the crowd that was there had a blast. Unfortunately, it was so late that the venue was only about half full – no doubt in part because they are playing again this afternoon on the main stage.
During their 2-song encore the lead singer brought out the birthday present he had gotten for himself: a double-neck guitar. They then proceeded to melt faces for about ten minutes. Check them out on Day 3 if you get the chance!