This February has been the longest year ever. Yeah, okay, I stole that from a meme I saw one of my friends post but it’s seriously the truth. My normal twenty minute drive home from work last night was extended into a nearly hour long karaoke session with myself and as I was leaving for the show, the snow was starting to fall… again… after snowing all day… and on top of the 32 feet of snow we already have. Everyone, including my snow-loving self, is completely over it yet there seems to be no end in sight. It’s easy to get lost in the literal darkness of winter and if you don’t have something to keep you from falling into that dark hole, winter can feel a hell of a lot longer for you. That’s why I’m so thankful for all of my shows and the fact that, although there was nothing I had to see last night, there was still a high quality show going on that I could escape to.
Kicking the night off just a couple of minutes past 8PM was local duo Strange Relations. Although I’ve seen their name before, I knew nothing about them or their music but as the duo took the stage behind just a bass, a drumset, and a pair of microphones, I was instantly intrigued. Without delay, the two jumped into a set that had that intrigue changing over to captivation. Drummer Casey Sowa did most of the vocals with one of the most comforting voices I’ve heard in the local scene for some time. Think CSS mixed with The Kills, her light and airy voice still had the fire-fueled feeling of passion behind it that had my jaw on the ground and my eyes glued to the stage. Although it was hard to turn away from Casey as she sang and drummer at the same time with an undeniable sense of ease, it was impossible to ignore bassist Maro Helgeson as she bounced to the infectious beat. One of the most intriguing parts of Strange Relations’ set was the way both the bass and Casey’s voice had so many different sounds and vibes. I mean, who knew a bass could make so many different sounds (okay, maybe it’s common knowledge but I was honestly shocked). Strange Relations is one of those bands that completely caught me off guard and it was so original that it took me awhile to really understand what was going on but after thinking about it I realized that’s exactly how it’s supposed to be. Strange Relations doesn’t need to be understood, their music is felt and I definitely felt it last night and truly can not wait to feel it again.
Already impressed with this random show I had stumbled into, Palehound took the stage and made sure that my night out in the cold and the risk of loosing a half way decent parking spot was well worth it. Hailing from the east coast, I was instantly struck by the passion that radiated from vocalist Ellen Kempner. I can’t exactly tell you why I was so struck by it but I can tell you that as soon as she kicked into the group’s first song, the hair on the back of my neck was standing straight up. much like Strange Relations, there was something so painfully honest about Palehound’s music that, although I had never heard of them before, everything about their set felt comfortable. Joined by Jesse Weiss on drumms and Larz Brogan on bass, Palehound powered through a nearly forty-five minute set with ease and power making the time absolutely fly by and leaving me wishing they had at least another three hours left in their set. Palehound will be coming back on October 21st to perform with Big Thief in the First Avenue mainroom. I have no clue who Big Thief is but you best believe I will be there to catch Palehound again.
I seemed to have been lost in my own world throughout last night’s show to the point where I didn’t even realize the modest crowd that had been there when I got to the show was now a packed house full of people who were excited to catch headliner Cherry Glazerr. Although in my own world and completely clueless as to who or what Cherry Glazerr was, it was one of those atmosphere that it was impossible not to get wrapped up in and when the lights went down and the trio took the stage, I couldn’t help but get a bit overly excited for whatever was to come.
California based Cherry Glazerr took the stage to a roar of applause and, like the other two bands before them, wasted no time when it came to jumping into their set. With a nearly twenty song set-list and an audience that was bouncing along to every beat and singing to nearly every song, it was obvious that this band is nothing new. They have apparently been making waves since 2013 and, although still considered a bit of an underground act, they definitely have a cult-like following of die hard fans. After just a couple of songs, that following made sense. Vocalist Clementine Creevy (who is a bit of a actress, a model, and an all around amazing who instantly became a new role model for me after reading up on her this morning) had this distinct way of whisking you away to dream land with her whispy, almost child-like whisper of a voice and then, in a blink of an eye, crushing that dream down with this sense of intensity and almost aggression in her voice. It was truly remarkable how this woman’s voice could make you feel so many things in such a short amount of time. Add the lo-fi almost California surf-rock vibe instrumentation going on behind her and you are left with a unique sound that bands only wish they had come up with.
The name of the game last night seemed to be organic and honest. Each of the three bands that took the stage had this sense of pure creativity and an attitude that screamed “I don’t care what you think. This is art. This is ours. This is real.” Stumbling into a show with that kind of vibe is something that does not happen often so to say last night was a treasure of a show wouldn’t be a stretch.
Don’t let this terrible winter get you down. Stumble into a show and let the creativity take over and remind you that there are still bright spots in the dreary arctic tundra that we call home.
Venue: Fine Line
Sausage Fest Meter- 4 out of 10
Average Age of the Crowd- 24
Crowd Surfers- None
Dance-Ability- 4.1 out of 10
Stage Divers- None
Broken Bones- 0
Spotted Flying Through The Air- Nothing
Drunkards Taken Out By Security- 0
Celebrity Sightings- None
Overall Score- 7.3 out of 10
Show on Deck- Space Monkey Mafia/ The Toasters
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