March 13, 2010

Reese's Cup Benefit, Broad St. Cafe, Durham 3/13/10

Last night, I went over to the Broad Street Cafe in Durham for the Reese's Cup Benefit for local rocker, Reese McHenry of The Dirty Little Heaters, who had to undergo heart surgery recently and is faced with a nasty medical bill. The line-up was a great selection of local rockers with big hearts; D-Town Brass, The Travesties, The Loners, The Pneurotics, and the revamped Love Language came out to help the cause.

Admittedly, I got a little wrapped up watching the ACC tournament before hand, so I was late and missed D-Town Brass. Whoops. I felt bad because I really like the group but watching Maryland fall to Georgia Tech was too good to not watch until the end. Sorry, D-Town, bad timing. I've seen D-Town before and I recommend checking them out. They are quite entertaining and very talented.

The Travesties were next. Lead by Viva, the tall and super slinky lead singer, The Travesties are a mix of dance and rock with some of that great Viva swagger. Not a far cry from his previous group, Jet Rink, Viva and the boys don't hold back playing upbeat, catchy '80's inspired songs that are a blast. I'm not sure who to compare them to and all I know is that no one stands still while they are playing. That's a good thing.

After The Travesties danced it out, The Loners rocked it out. Guitar solos be damned!! Having seen these guys last week, their brand of rock was still fresh in my mind.  As I said in a review of last week's show, few groups can pull off the guitar and drum only combo and make it sound good, and The Loners have it down pat. Drink a PBR and stand back and listen as they tear through solid tunes, one after another with no filler. They are a Triangle institution and a treasure to have in our arsenal of local rock.

The Pneurotics were next. They play a style of 90's inspired power pop rock. Lead by a husband and wife team, they delivered their set with passion and fun filled hooks, from what I saw and heard. I'll admit that three songs deep I took off to the bar next door for a beer and to give my ears a break. The three songs I heard were decent but average enough for me to not feel so bad about changing scenery for half an hour.

I returned just in time for the final act of the night, it was the debut of the new lean and mean The Love Language. Having lost three members recently and added just two new ones, LL seemed to be ready to come out and put the hammer down and make sure they remain the most talked about local band. I've seen the previous version of LL a couple times, and I enjoyed it, for the most part. Sometimes a little light for my taste, this version seemed tight, concise, and ready to embrace the power pop sensibilities that I knew were always there but maybe I was too drunk to ever realize. Or maybe I had read so much about them that the effort never seemed to equal the hype. Last night, though, this version grabbed me from the get go and I was hooked. I don't know what it was before that I missed about them, but it all seemed to click. They were energetic, playful, engaging and got straight to the point. Main man Stu and new guitarist BJ Burton formed quite the duo, playing off each other and complementing each ones style without stepping on toes. The rhythm section and keyboardist filled it all out with a precision that was surgical.

Even though I am singing their praises in this post, I do have one complaint: the overly aggressive hipsterness of few members have. I might just be jealous, actually. Blessed with the ability to grow bangs is probably taken for granted by these guys. Also, the only other person I know who wears tighter t-shirts is a certain someone sometimes known as Johnny Muscle.

Maybe it was the excitement of the new lineups first show or its the fact that Stu has found the right people to help convey his message, either way, they were stellar and unmatched. Fortunately, they have some more shows in the area coming up after a small tour, which will no doubt tighten them up even more. Check out this article on Triangle Music for dates and more info.

1 comment:

  1. So the only beef you have with Love Language is over their hipster hairstyles? Really?


    That is so metal.