Ben Dell’Orto @bend353 Oct 5, 2013
The Futurebirds found its success in its reverb-soaked tracks, ranging from slow, strum-heavy tunes to more up-beat rockers, over the course of its hour-long set.
The group’s players are plenty talented — each of its three guitarists took up lead vocals at various points in the show, as two of its guitarists shared leads. The singers’ harmonies are the highlight of the group’s studio albums, but almost got lost in the live set, behind the heavy sound of the instruments.
The band’s sound saw also clearly bolstered by the inclusion of its steel guitarist, who spent the show in the background, but added a necessary element to the group’s sound.
The group’s opener track, “Johnny Utah,” was a lot of fun, despite being a slower song, featuring a great backup vocal. “Death Awaits” was another great performance, allowing the group to develop its sound over a simple guitar part, and didn’t lose any of its power over its long performance, which lasted more than six minutes.
The first opener, Tia Madre, had its set get off to a rough start initially, trying to blend several instruments into an extended intro, which featured a lot of sound effects from its keyboard, and felt more like several noises jockeying for dominance instead of playing a cohesive piece.
Its set improved greatly after this track. Many of the group’s instruments were drenched with a little too much reverb, but it did have some interesting work from its instrumentalists, who found their success jamming over its long tracks.
Diarrhea Planet, coming from Nashville, asked the audience to consider how many guitarists a band can have before it gets ridiculous. The group boasts four — plus a bassist — all of whom share vocals, and take turns shredding over its metal-influenced punk songs. Sometimes its music sounded crowded with so many guitarists, but the band seems to make it work.
While Tia Madre’s reverb-heavy music was similar to that of the Futurebirds, Diarrhea Planet had a much different sound than the other two groups.
Together, the trio of bands made for an interesting, varied night of music, but the Futurebirds was definitely what brought the crowd in, and rightly so