You Me At Six “Back Again” at the 9:30 Club

IMG_6705You Me At Six are in the first week of their North American Back Again Tour and night four brought them to the nation’s capital to rock the famous 9:30 Club. The backdrop on stage was displaying the cover art of their sixth studio album VI, released October 18, 2018. Drummer Dan Flint was the first to take the stage standing silhouetted against the backdrop. A roar erupted from the crowd as the lights came up and the rest of the band made their way out. Singer Josh Franceschi and bassist Matt Barnes leaping around at the energy being shown for them on a Sunday night. This is what live music is about.

The first song of the evening, Fast Forward, is also the first track from the album VI and by the crowd reaction they were thrilled. From the time Josh sang the first note the crowd was singing along and only got louder as the night progressed. These were fans there for a You Me At Six show and they were proud to show it. Impressively the set list was a fantastic mix of songs from every album spanning their fifteen year career. Half way through the night Josh asked the crowd how many people have seen You Me At Six before and how many were first timers. Surprisingly three-quarters of the crowd were seeing the band for the first time. One young fan was treated to having their cell phone taken so Josh could walk around and record the guys playing up close before handing it back to them. Thankfully the banter between songs was kept to a minimum which kept the pace of the show flowing and made it possible to get more music in.

There were two main highlights of the night and both came towards the end. One of the few times Josh conversed with the crowd it was to bring attention to the “bullshit practice of lying to the fans about the last song” before briefly leaving the stage Josh said “you know we are lying, I know you know we’re lying, but we have to do this thing called an encore even though we all know it’s one big lie so humor us please?” and as promised they were back onstage in a matter of minutes. Without wasting anymore time the guys jumped right back into the music with Room To Breathe off of the 2014 album Cavalier Youth. Before the crowd knew what was happening, Josh was on the floor right in the middle of them all as the intro to Underdog started.  It was difficult to tell who was more excited to be in the crowd, Josh or the fans that quickly swarmed him.  It didn’t take very long to figure out the answer as someone handed Josh a drink and he doled out hugs, high fives, took selfies, and smiled from ear to ear.

I have to admit I was blown away by how good the show was. I first learned of You Me At Six when Cavalier Youth was released and I was one of the first timers in the crowd. If you haven’t seen them yet or want to see them again the tour runs through March 16. A list of the remaining U.S. dates can be found at www.youmeatsix.co.uk and flood your local radio stations with requests so they have a reason to visit the states sooner!

Highly Suspect @ Baltimore Soundstage 11/5/16

 

 

 

Highly Suspect’s second full length album, “The Boy Who Died Wolf” is slated for release on November 18, 2016. The trio from Brooklyn, New York has been touring nonstop since brothers Rich and Ryan Meyer and best friend Johnny Stevens decided to stop playing covers and started writing their own music. Highly Suspect is able to weave several genres together into a sound of their own. By taking the blues, grunge, classic rock and a little hip hop and blending them with life stories, they have a way of leaving the listener wanting more. On Saturday the 5th of November 2016 they brought their sonic sound and high energy show to the Baltimore Soundstage.

Opening the night was local favorites The Henchmen. Known around Baltimore for influencing and promoting the music scene, it was apparent a large portion of the crowd was there to see them. Led by Kevin Hock on vdsc_2171ocals, guitar and the piano, The Henchmen bring back the speakeasy feel of the 20’s and 30’s with an edge. Supported by Drew Pallace on guitar, Jim Matusky  on bass, and Nick Heflin on drums, The Henchmen took the stage in classy suits and ties and laid down a jazz infused rock that had people in the mood to get there groove going. Whether it was taping their foot, bobbing their head or singing along, the crowd was drawn in to what The Henchmen were serving.  2017 looks to be a big year for The Henchmen with plans to get back into the studio to record their follow up EP. While you wait for that to happen, make sure to pick up their self-titled EP through all the major outlets, if you haven’t already, and follow them on Facebook for updates and future show announcements.

https://www.facebook.com/TheHenchmenMusic/?fref=ts

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-henchmen-ep/id1140639960

https://play.spotify.com/album/7ahKHfjKhrMKq9RYnEqxDC

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JO9LSDK/ref=sr_1_1_rd?_encoding=UTF8&child=B01JO9LT3E&qid=1479053915&sr=1-1</a>

dsc_2336Slothrust have been the supporting act for a large portion of this tour. Fronted by Leah Wellbaum on vocals and guitar and backed by bassist Kyle Bann and drummer Will Gorin, Slothrust delivers a unique experience. Fusing jazz influences with a punk rock sound similar to Veruca Salt in the 90’s. With a no frills set, Slothrust took the stage to the cheers of the crowd. A strong following of fans that managed to get on the rail hung on every word that Leah sang. Head banging, singing along and completely lost to their surroundings; totally in the moment. No cell phones recording, no one taking photos– just a new generation of music lovers living in the here and now.  The majority of songs on Slothrust’s twelve song set can be found on their latest album Everyone Else released in October 2016.

 

http://www.slothrust.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Slothrust/app/204974879526524/

ITunes: http://apple.co/1OziyCe

Spotify: http://spoti.fi/29Tm8FE

SLOTHRUST SETLIST: Baltimore Soundstage 11/5/2016

  1. Surf Goth
  2. Misnomer
  3. Mud
  4. 7:30am
  5. Pseudo Culture
  6. Like a Child Hiding Behind Your Tombstone
  7. Magnets, Pt. 2
  8. Rotten Pumpkin
  9. Horseshoe Crab
  10. Pigpen
  11. Crockpot
  12. Beowulf

dsc_2365It was evident that this show would be a total 360 compared to the last time Highly Suspect were in Baltimore back in March. The crowd has gone from 100 people to a sold out crowd of 1000 and they were hyped up. Highly Suspect took the stage a little after 9p.m. and wasted no time getting right into the music. Diving right into Bath Salts off of their debut album Mister Asylum, Johnny had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hand. Judging by the way he couldn’t stop smiling he knew he had them too and it did not stop him from showing off the blues/jazz influence during Lost and Bloodfeather.  These two songs speak of love, loss and hurt and even a touch of betrayal.  Regardless of the journeys they have written about, Johnny, Rich and Ryan are in a great place. How many people get to do what they enjoy and share the entire experience with their best friends? Johnny made sure to take a minute to humbly thank the crowd for coming out and encouraged everyone in attendance to be loud as hell and to make this the rowdiest show of the tour.dsc_2401 If you have been a fan of Highly Suspect from the beginning then you have seen the acronym M.C.I.D somewhere. If not you may have seen the merch table and new T-shirt “What The F$@k is MCID”. Well it stands for MY CREW IS DOPE but as Johnny stated when addressing the crowd,” to Highly Suspect it means family.” Midway through the set the band played the first track off of the new album My Name is Human. It’s a slower song with a heavy bass riff and a smooth chorus that became an instant sing along with the fans as they waved their arms from side to side along with Johnny. The highlight of the night came when the band launched into Lydia. The first single released from Mister Asylum which generated a lot of buzz and earned them two Grammy nominations, one for best rock song of 2016 and one for best rock album of the year. For an encore Highly Suspect finished with the most recent track available through pre-order “Wolf” before inviting the crowd to join them on stage for the song Fire in Bedstuy. Within seconds the stage was filled with adoring fans jumping and singing along to the point you almost couldn’t see the band anymore. Probably not the safest thing to do but when these guys say they will throw a party a party is what you’re getting. Special thanks to Kevin Liles who was in attendance for the evening. Mr. Liles grew up in West Baltimore and has been an instrumental part in the careers of some of the music industry’s biggest names including HIGHLY SUSPECT.dsc_2413-edit

http://highlysuspect.net/

iTunes: http://smarturl.it/MisterAsylum
Spotify: http://smarturl.it/HighlySuspectSpotify
Google Play: http://smarturl.it/HighlySuspectplay
Amazon: http://smarturl.it/HighlySuspectamz
Merch Store: http://highlysuspectband.colortestmerch.com/

HIGHLY SUSPECT SETLIST: Baltimore Soundstage 11/5/2016

1. Bath Salts

2. Lost

3. Bloodfeather

4. Vanity

5. Round & Round dsc_2432

6. Mom

7. Fuck Me Up

8. Serotonia dsc_2466-edit

9. My Name Is Human

10. Lydia

11. Claudeland

12. ATL

Encore:

13. Wolf

14. Fire in Bedstuy

 

 

Cage The Elephant to start taking pre-orders for their upcoming album ‘Tell Me I’m Pretty’ with Pledgemusic

http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/cagetheelephant

Taking back to their roots, Cage The Elephant have recorded their fourth studio album “Tell Me I’m Pretty’ with a release date of December 18,2015.  Currently you can pre-order the album with some fantastic perks to go with it, for example autographed items, exclusive t-shirts, posters and even Skype sessions with band members. The most interesting to me is a disposable camera that the band will take on the road so you can get a behind the scenes look at what goes on within The Cage The Elephant camp. Click the link above and find out how you can participate and support their campaign.