Blitzen Trapper was a great opening act, and although the four guitars and multiple keyboards sounded a bit excessive when they were played at once, the band had an awesome energy and turned the City by the Bay into a Wild Mountain Nation (the name of their debut album). Blitzen Trapper have a familiar organic sound that is an eclectic mix of country rock, and blues. The title track sounds a little like the Grateful Dead. "Devil A Go Go" is a rowdy track, and although the crowd didn't seem as familiar with their material, heads were bobbing, and when the songs would end they were followed by some hoots and hollers, even the occasional "Yee-Haw!" To which the keyboardist replied, "yee-haw, indeed." You gotta love high brow alt-country.
The Two Gallants have a lot of heart, and it really came through in their performance. I have their last album, and was moved to buy their newest after the show. Vocalist Adam Stephens has a gut wrenching raspy voice, that sounded strangely soft at the beginning of the show. Once he was warmed up, the entire audience was on a string. They played songs from their new record including stand outs "Miss Meri," and "The Hand That Held Me Down," but the party really got jumping with "Steady Rollin'" from What the Toll Tells. Fists began pumping at the first few chords. "Steady Rollin'" is one of the best drinking songs of the last decade, and one of those tracks that if you ever need a kick in the ass, the song will give it to you. There was a sweet moment during the song where Stephens sings about tossing his wife in the Bay, and everyone sang along... partly because it's a great melody, and partly because people love to hear their geography referenced in song.
LP / CD / MP3
LP / CD / MP3