For those of you who wonder "What has RevThom been listening to lately?" I bring you a round up of concerts and shows I attended this Summer.
Yesterday I went to the Bleeding Kansas Arts & Music Festival in Lawrence. Death Cab for Cutie headlined and put on a fantastic show. The double drum-set solo and guitarist Chris Walla's friendly earnestness were memorable. They offered up a great version of "What Sarah Said" and brought a new power and depth to "Transatlanticism" as their encore.
However, I was most impressed by the set from Broken Social Scene. This 10 member outfit put on a lively and layered show, at one time featuring a line up with four electric guitars and two drum sets. Band members entered and exited the stage in the middle of songs and traded instruments constantly. Along with guitar, bass, and drums they also featured trumpets, a trombone, keyboards, a violin, tambourines and maracas.
In contrast Mates of the State consists of just a keyboard and drum duo, but played a fine afternoon set. I ran into keyboardist Kori Gardner later in the day and she was just a down to earth individual.
British rockers Keane, who I'd never really gotten into before, were surprisingly good. I'll have to listen to more of them.
Off the main stage, local band Davan put on one of the most enjoyable sets of the afternoon. The quirky trio seemed like Devo for the 21st Century. At one point, the drummer employed maracas as drum sticks while the guitarist opted for a triangle and a cabaca.
Rounding out the day, I also checked out parts of enjoyable sets by local rockers Appleseed Cast and Ghosty, as well as Langhorne Slim, Fourth of July, and Boy Kill Boy.
On August 3rd, after spending the afternoon writing my sermon I checked the early shows at the Pitch Music Showcase in Westport. I saw a great set from avant garde rockers namelessnumberheadman, as well as sets from the emo-core group Super Black Market and the Lawrence hip-hop outfit Archetype.
A trip home to Boston in July happened to coincide with a visit from the 6 piece Austin, TX band Sound Team. Known for their dense sound - at times they employ three keyboard/synths - the high light of their show was that their lead guitarist, Sam Sanford, was a classmate of mine and fellow religion major at Reed College. Sound Team was supported impressively by the frenetic Cold War Kids and art-rockers Midlake.
Other Summer shows included one of the final performances by Lawrence ska band Matfield Green (featuring SMUUCh member Cambria DeLee on trumpet), local shows by The Architects and my good friends National Fire Theory, and The Reverend Al Green down at 18th & Vine.