Monday, January 30, 2012

The Motet's "Best of Halloween" 1.28.12

Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
Denver, CO

Words By Nicholas Stock
Photos & Video By Nicholas Stock

The Motet rounded out their two night sold out run with a "Best of Halloween" show with local act The Congress supporting. January 28th was bandleader and drummer extraordinaire, Dave Watts’ birthday. I headed down early during soundcheck to take some shots for The Motet’s promo video about their inclusion in the lineup for Wakarusa. After getting what we needed on video, myself, J-man, Carly and sax player Pete Wall met up with J-man’s brother, Brandon (who was also celebrating a birthday) and his girlfriend, Katie. I should add that this was also the nine-year anniversary of Cervantes and the old girl couldn’t be looking better. I rarely make it down because the lineup has skewed to the more electronic side of the scene, but every time I’m there I notice further improvements. The lighting rig and stage have truly evolved into solid setup, but this time around I noticed new sound baffling and some interesting lighting over the bar. It’s awesome seeing Cervantes transform into the room that I always knew it could be. So with festivity in the air I met up with my brother and friend Sean who was visiting from Iowa for the show.

The Congress took the stage shortly after 9 PM. When I saw them on the bill I was stoked, because they are one of the few truly impressive acts that has bubbled up to the surface in the last year or so. They opened with a rocking "Loretta."

The Congress Live at Cervantes Masterpiece on January 28, 2012.

SET I: Loretta, Pullin’ Weeds, Hundred Miles, Johnah Gideon, Minutes*, Fall, Keep Virginia, Walls, Dixie Chicken**, Distance

*With Pete Wall
**With Dan Schwindt & Joey Porter

Setlist Provided by Scott Lane of The Congress

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, The Congress is a forceful rock outfit that combines great vocals and a level of tightness that is truly compelling. With Meadows tossing out y’alls to the crowd they create a relaxing vibe with every note before blasting off into their own brand of rock and roll. Overall this set took down the intensity level with The Congress demonstrating some of their slower tunes such as "Minutes" and "Keep Virginia," but they didn’t hesitate to show their dynamic range with tracks like "Walls." The highlight of the set was their original face-melter "Johnah Gideon" which is both riff-y and well written and the Porter/Schwindt sit-in on Little Feat’s "Dixie Chicken." I was very happy with their set and will continue to recommend to anyone seeking out a great rocking time to check them out.

In between the sets DJ Mikey Thunder spun for the crowd. I have to say I was not that impressed. I know he is well liked and that he has his own brand of jazzy whomp, but on Saturday he missed the mark. I felt like he came up short and didn’t fit into the overall flow of the show. It felt like an unnecessary add-on to an already strong lineup.

The Motet came on around 11:15 PM and kicked it all off with Jamiroquai’s "Emergency On Planet Earth," a funky way to set the mood.

The Motet Live at Cervantes Masterpiece on January 28, 2012.

SET I: Emergency On Planet Earth, We Can Work It Out, I Feel For You, Dear Prudence, Runnin’, Call My Name, 1+1+1=3

SET II: Shinning Star, Too Young To Die, Magic Mind, Take Me To The River, Fair But Uncool, Virtual Insanity, Only So Much Oil

ENCORE: That’s The Way Of The World, Blame It On The Boogie

Seeing The Motet perform their "Funk is Dead" show in October and play a show of originals on New Year’s Eve, I was ready for this Best of Halloween extravaganza. Motet is truly accomplished with their style of electro-funk, but could easily be considered Jam’s best cover band. I say that because their Halloween tradition of covering a band’s repertoire has become incredibly popular on the Front Range and is a guaranteed sellout run. Furthermore it’s not like they are playing straight covers, they truly take the material and make it their own, which is most evident with their "Funk is Dead" shows. The first set saw two Beatles tunes with "We Can Work It Out" as well as "Dear Prudence," the later of which was my highlight. They ended the set with a duo of songs from Prince in the form of "Call My Name" and "1+1+1=3." Musically they sounded great. The extended lineup of The Motet with Paul McDaniel and Kim Dawson on vocals as well as Dan Schwindt on guitar, who is a member but only plays select dates, is truly a sight to behold. With 12 people on stage there is so much talent that at times my head was bouncing around like a pinball machine to catch all the action. They ended the first set with Dave Watts’ birthday celebration. A unicorn piƱata was lowered while Dave took a few swings before it exploded showering the crowd with adult party favors.

DJ Mikey Thunder again played the setbreak and kept the mood celebratory by playing birthday themed cuts. The Motet came back to play around 12:30 PM and played until close. The second set combined with the first to give the fans a smorgasbord of what they offered on Halloween over the years. They opened with Earth, Wind, & Fire’s "Shinning Star." The Motet came out with their version of Michael Jackson’s "Magic Mind," which was sick but the peak came with the Talking Heads’ "Take Me To The River." They closed the set with the funky "Only So Much Oil" originally by Tower Of Power. Typically they have stayed closed to funk as it is their forte, but in recent years they have begun to apply their inherent funkiness to bands that don’t necessarily fit that mold. It just shows that they are thinking bigger and it has paid off for them. They are playing a number of festivals this summer and are beginning to branch out with their touring. It’s time for Colorado to share the awesomeness of The Motet with the rest of the country.

They encored with another Earth, Wind, & Fire track with "That’s The Way Of The World" and the Jackson 5’s "Blame It On The Boogie" that was a funky punctuation mark on the whole experience! I was stoked on the whole show proving to me once again that no matter what, The Motet delivers. They play with a power and intensity that always makes them worth the trip. Good luck to them as they begin to really branch out this summer. The time is right.

Nicholas' Photo Gallery

The Motet's "Funk is Dead" 1.27.12

Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
Denver, CO

Words By J-man
Photos By J-man & Carly Marthis

Not many bands generate as much excitement and buzz as The Motet do in Colorado. The state's resident super-group played what appears to be an annual two night run at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom to commemorate the birthday's of drummer/Motet magic man, Dave Watts and Scott Morrill, one of the owners of the venue. Both Cervantes and The Motet took no shortcuts in making the weekend a fantastic spectacle. Friday night played host to the "Funk is Dead" theme, with Saturday marking the "Best of Halloween." The weekend was a clear reminder of why we as music fans, reside in Denver, CO.

We arrived at the venue late afternoon on Friday for soundcheck. Entering Cervantes I was taken aback by several noticeable changes/upgrades to the venue. Glancing up at the ceiling I noticed directional sound tiles, an impressive light rig and the first of two large screens that were being put up for projections. I was greeted with a warm welcome, typical of The Motet family. The band set up, warmed up and dialed in before seguing into a rehearsal. We ducked out after a few songs and headed to dinner and a friends pre-party. As was the case with many of the folks attending the evening's show, the party began early.

We found ourselves at Cervantes around 9:30 pm. We collected our passes/credentials and made our way into the venue along side several others. The place was buzzing as the East Coast super-group, Kung Fu kicked the evening off in the Ballroom. They were throwing out raging progressive jams that peaked frequently and the combination of Tim Palmieri (The Breakfast) and Todd Stoops (RAQ) was mind-blowing. The place was already near packed and the set felt like a headlining slot. Kung-Fu turned it up to eleven.

The anticipation in the room hit a boiling point as The Motet took the stage to a massive reception. The first high points of the set came with a "Help On The Way>Slipknot>Franklin's Tower." The compositions and arrangements were extensive and well executed. The transitions were smooth with minimal misses and flowing with ease. "Samson and Delilah" followed with sweet tones and harmonies. Other high points of the first set included "Dancing in The Streets" and "Scarlet Begonias." Though not the best set that I have heard from The Motet, there were some great high points and it was well received by the sold out crowd.

The setbreak opened the door for typical hustle and bustle with folks heading is all directions. The party vibe was in full effect with Cervantes looking similar to a building on fire. Thirty minutes later The Motet returned to the stage for a set that would extend into the early morning.

The second set began with "The Other One>Music Never Stopped>Casey Jones." The transitions were decent and it seemed at a couple of points that they were teasing "Dark Star." The lights and projections were very well done and helped to elevate the already incredible atmosphere. One of my favorites, "They Love Each Other" followed with beautiful soul. I sang along with the folks around me in what was one of the highlights of the evening for me personally. "St. Stephan" rang out with the melody boasting a funk swing. The horn section sounded great and the jam slowed down to feature Joey Porter on the talk box. Joey's electronic sounding vocals created a euphoric vibe with people looking on in amazement. It was a great section and an interesting twist to the classic tune.

"Fire on The Mountain" was another high point of the second set. "We Bid You Goodnight" closed the set with a solid three part harmony. There were a couple of vocal flubs that stood out pretty blatantly, but the recovery made up for the misses. The setlist reflected a "China Cat," which was scratched due to time. Some where around 2:15 am The Motet encored with a ripping "Shakedown Street." The energy was so elevated and other than a couple of missed cues by the horn section, the song was a great choice to close the evening.

It was a crazy night of friends, community, music and partying. The Motet consistently brings one of the best party vibes that many have ever experienced. Catching a sold out Motet show at Cervantes is one of the pinnacles of our scene. The euphoria, the atmosphere, the positiveness of the music... For me, it's about as good as it gets.

Carly Marthis & J-man's Photo Gallery

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Toubab Krewe 1.22.12

Bluebird Theater
Denver, CO

Words By J-man
Photos & Video By Carly Marthis & J-man

It was just one year prior that I took my girlfriend, Carly Marthis, to her first Toubab Krewe show. She assisted me in conducting an interview with Justin Perkins and Luke Quaranta backstage and when showtime finally came I turned to Carly to gage her reaction, as she had never heard the band play one note. As they began, I thought Carly was going to lose it. She was blown away and following that night, Toubab Krewe became one of her favorite bands. Their return to Denver marked Carly's first opportunity to see Toubab following her discovery and what a fantastic night of music it was!

Our evening began downstairs/backstage with Justin Perkins and special guest, Faisal Salahuddin, working out some material. Their sounds were very unique and pure...

As show time approached, members of Toubab wandered downstairs and joined in on the warm up. 10:30 pm rolled around and Toubab hit the stage to the adoring Denver crowd. Their sound was incredible and had The Bluebird Theater moving. The combination of stringed instruments and percussion was thrilling and very roots-oriented. The tonal quality of the instruments was staggering as Justin's Cora resonated brightly. Drew Heller tore apart his guitar with well calculated precision and style. Luke Quaranta added an immeasurable contribution with his Djembe. David Pransky's bass playing was heavy and funky coupling well with Vic Stafford's drumming.

Toubab is by far one of the purest and most unique bands on our scene and that night in Denver we were treated to an incredible display of musicianship, innovation and energy. Their utilization of roots instruments coupled with electric guitars and keys has only further expanded and deepened their sound. The addition of Faisal to the group brought yet another bright and exciting layer to the table. He seemed to mesh as if he had played with Toubab often. Folks danced, folks smiled and folks got their money's worth. That night (as is the case with every Toubab Krewe show that I have seen) I didn't hear one complaint leaving the Bluebird. Folks love Toubab... and I am one of those folks.

Carly & J-man's Photo Gallery

Friday, January 27, 2012

Freaking at The Freaks Ball 1.21.12

Brooklyn Bowl
Brooklyn, NY

Words By Karen Dugan (
Photos By Josh Raskin
Videos By Scott Merenstein & Marc Millman

Last Saturday, The Brooklyn Bowl played host to the 12th Annual Freaks Ball, a high-energy party hosted by the deeply-rooted, music-loving Yahoo! Group the NYC Freaks. With access to so much music, New Yorkers are privileged to see any act of their choice. In some cases, multiple times a year. However, it’s a show like The Freaks Ball that we wait for as music lovers in New York City.

A wonderful part of NYC’s underground musical culture, the NYC Freaks have been around as long as anyone can remember. After inquiring to a few members, many couldn’t recall when they were invited to join NYC’s hottest music list, but noted that they were happy members and the list was their main access to music knowledge and insight. This party would be for the Freaks. Seeing the collection of hugging friends as the city’s heaviest music-loving hitters entered the Brooklyn Bowl was inspirational. The pockets of positivity around me were wonderful. This wasn’t your typical gathering for a concert at Brooklyn Bowl. Freaks had taken over.

Over the years, this friendly, musical party has included musicians and projects that eventually went on to hit the national jam-band scene, including The Duo (Marco Benevento and Joe Russo), Robert Randolph, Apollo Sunshine, RANA, Bustle in Your Hedgerow, New Mastersounds and members of the extended Daptone family.

Opening the show was a quartet consisting of Eric Deutsch on keys, Joe Russo on drums, Scott Metzger (Wolf!) on guitar and Hagar Ben-Ari (Dap Kings) on bass. They played a tight set consisting of the Beatle’s "Day Tripper," Grateful Dead’s "New Speedway Boogie," a 'Wolf!' tune called "Get in The Van," Erik Deutsch’s original "Funky Digits," Neil Young's "Don't Let it Bring You Down" and an Ike Willis tune to close the set called "Funky Mule." If one didn’t know any better, one might have thought that this was a polished group who rehearsed regularly. In reality, the set exposed four accomplished musicians with great talent coming together for a unique super jam that was solid, full of varying styles of music and fully preparing us for the main event that was about to hit the stage.

After a short intermission, we were delivered a Super Jam of E-P-I-C proportions with the Freaks B’all Stars that included Warren Haynes (Allman Brothers), Eric Krasno (Soulive), Eddie Roberts (The New Mastersounds), Joe Russo (Furthur), Marco Benevento (Surprise Me Mr. Davis), Ron Johnson and Alecia Chakour (Warren Haynes Band).

The collection of musical talent on stage was staggering. Over the course of the night, each musician rotated on and off the stage providing for a rare night of music. Each guitarist was distinctly different in sound covering songs like Sly Stone’s "Sing a Simple Song," Howard Tate’s "You Don’t Know Nothing About Love" and The Meter’s "Funky Miracle." Bassist Ron Johnson held it down for the entire set with the biggest smile, killing it during "Windjammer."

The Brooklyn Bowl audience stood in a pile of their own tears as the super group displayed their love for the magnificent Etta James, who died just days earlier. Alecia Chakour’s voice shook the rafter’s as she and Warren Haynes shared a duet on "Little Wings" while Eric Krasno’s guitar gentley wept through "I’d Rather Go Blind."

The lights this evening were above par, complimenting Marco Benevento’s unique sound as he performed his original "Mephisto" and the Benevento/Russo Duo’s "Scratchitti." Everyone joined the stage to close with "While My Guitar Gently Weeps." A completely wonderful, ripping spectacle.

The Freaks Ball kicked off a trend of many more magical nights at the Brooklyn Bowl and raised the bar so high that it will be a long time before this night of music is topped. I look forward to running into more Freaks when that time comes.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Grant Farm & American Beauty 1.21.12

Quixote's True Blue
Denver, CO

Words By J-man
Photos By Carly Marthis & J-man

There was lots of music happening in Denver that night. We found ourselves at Quixote's True Blue for a mellow evening of Dead music. Coming through the door of the venue I could hear Grant Farm had already taken the stage. Entering the room I was shocked to see that there was next to no one in attendance. I glanced down at my phone to see that it was just past 9:30 pm. Folks don't usually turn out to Quixote's until 10:30-11:00. We took a seat on a ledge near the soundboard and tuned into the music.

Tyler Grant and the most updated version of his project, Grant Farm, performed their rock/country sounding arrangements with fury and precision. The reason I use the word "arrangements" as opposed to "tunes" or "jams" is out of respect for the technical organization of the music. What was once a bluegrass/jam project has developed and blossomed into a unique rock group. The project is comprised of a talented group of musicians including, Chris Misner (Drums), Sean Foley (Keys), Ace Engfer (Bass) & Tyler Grant on guitar.

Their original material impressed me, but it was the utilization of the Grateful Dead's "Help>Slipknot>Franklin's Tower" that stole the show. It was fantastic to hear Jay Bianchi (owner) yell in excitement as the band transitioned into "Franklin's Tower." I see a lot of shows at Quixote's, but I have never seen Jay get so excited. He stood dancing in front of the stage as the small crowd's danced with utter joy! The hair stood on my arms as as Tyler dug into some mind-blowing guitar work. I was very impressed with Grant Farm's set.

In the back room Grateful Dead cover band, American Beauty, took over with some solid renditions of Dead material. As it got later more folks turned out to join the party. It's always a good time listening to Dead music at Quixote's and that night was one of those mellow enjoyable evenings...

*Special thanks to Tyler Grant for sitting down for a conversation with MusicMarauders Live!

Carly & J-man's Photo Gallery

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Infamous Stringdusters 1.19.12

Fox Theatre
Boulder, CO

Words By J-man
Photos By J-man & Carly Marthis

The Infamous Stringdusters were back in Boulder, CO which meant that's where we needed to be. We battled one of the windiest nights in Colorado from Denver to Boulder where we found ourselves parked in the lot across the street from The Fox Theatre. There was a long line out front of the building and the sizeable crowd that gathered looked excited and energetic. Inside the theatre it was filling in quickly. A photographer snapped shots of folks in different poses as they came through the door for The Fox Theatre's Facebook page. The mood was really light and party-like as the opener Pert' Near Sandstone took the stage.

Music filled the Fox with Pert' Near Sandstone putting out some old-time sounding bluegrass. I enjoyed the music and thought it to be a fitting opener for The Stringdusters, however it was odd to see that one of the gentleman's role in the band was almost strictly tap dancing. Somewhere during their set I received a text from Chris Pandolfi (Banjo) letting us know that they were backstage and that we should join them. We toughed our way through the crowd toward the backstage enterance where we were greeted by Chris.

Backstage members of The Stringdusters warmed up and prepared for what was looking like a sold out show. We stepped to the far end of the dressing room to record a conversation for MusicMarauders Live.

Following the conversation we headed back upstairs... On the way up the stairs, the evening's set list was posted on the wall. I immediately noticed the name "Jeff Austin" (Yonder Mountain String Band) on the set list. We headed out into the crowd and found a spot with a little bit of room towards the back of the venue. Approaching the time that The Stringdusters would take the stage, I headed back to the greenroom once more to grab a group shot of the band. This time I found Jeff Austin and Tyler Grant (Grant Farm) backstage...

The show began with an outward pouring of energy and musical talent! The band moved freely around the stage shifting their positions as they passed around solos. The vibe was electric. Just prior to the ISD's set I confirmed with the manager of The Fox that the show was indeed sold out! The Fox was packed and moving along with the sweet melodies of the Stringdusters.

Songs like "Steam Powered Airplane" and "Get It While You Can" resonated throughout the theater and the hearts of those lucky fans in attendance. As expected, Jeff Austin joined the Stringdusters on stage, elevating the vibe and exciting the crowd beyond belief! As Jeff took the stage, The Fox went into a frenzy of dancing, yelling and beer spilling! After getting tagged with our second beer, we made the unfortunate but necessary decision to exit The Fox to protect our gear. We took our equipment back to our car and attempted to find a decent spot to view the show from the back of the crammed venue. Alas, it was packed, uncomfortable and near overwhelming.

"Good for The Stringdusters," I thought as we exited the venue. They had outgrown The Fox Theatre! What an impressive turnout for an incredibly talented band. The Stringdusters have become quite the sought out group of musicians... Possibly the best at what they do on the bluegrass scene. If there is a more complete package, I'm not aware of it. Go see The Infamous Stringdusters!

J-man & Carly's Photo Gallery

Monday, January 23, 2012

Split Lip Rayfield 1.21 12

Bluebird Theater
Denver, CO

Words, Photos & Vidoe By Nicholas Stock

To celebrate entering my 31st year on this planet we headed down to The Bluebird in Denver to catch Split Lip Rayfield. I had a solid crew consisting of Amy, my brother and my best friend Ben. We grabbed a spot on the rail in the balcony as I roamed around taking photos. I love the Bluebird; it is by far my favorite intimate venue in Denver. Good layout, awesome sightlines, amazing acoustics and a great crew all combined to make any musical experience at The Bluebird a good one. Living in Fort Collins, I don’t get down as often as I would like, but it’s always a pleasure when I make it back.

Soon after we arrived Rayland Baxter Took the stage. Rayland was a mustachioed troubadour from Nashville. Odessa Rose accompanied him on violin and backing vocals for most of his set. Baxter demonstrated an incredible sonic range going from minimalist plucking to a full on audio assault. He was a storyteller and an acoustic bard. Rayland had an unusual knack for weaving songs out of observations, from his Mountain Song about living in the Rockies of Colorado to his interesting biopic entitled "Willie’s Song." The highlight of his set was a tragic tinged tune called "The Cold Easy Life of a Loner." It was a great albeit slower way to start the show.

The Magic Beans are anything but slow. Bringing a slew of their own fans with them, many in the crowd showed a level of enthusiasm rarely seen for a local act. Hailing from Nederland, The Magic Beans have begun to build a loyal fanbase that is willing to catch them up and down the Front Range. A young band with a lot of potential, they seem to be all over the map when it comes to their sound; ranging from Phishy jam to a Disco Biscuits style dance party. At times they drifted into a distinctly Dead tone, which I found to be the best parts of their show. I will say this set of songs was very similar to their opening set for Elephant Revival that I caught a few months back at The Aggie, but that’s understandable given their youth. The Magic Beans have enormous promise, and are already making waves in and around the Denver jam scene. Given the fact that they have had some solid opening slots and are finding their way into festival lineups including the upcoming Snowball and Phibstock. I see good things in their future as they continue to develop their style.

Split Lip Rayfield took the stage around 11:00 pm. This trio from Witchita, Kansas was a rapid fire kick in the junk. With machine-gun delivery and an urgent take on traditional bluegrass, their sound was simply infectious. Often classified as cowpunk and appropriately so, Split Lip Rayfield is a punch bowl of all things bluegrass. The only thing for certain was that this was not Del McCoury’s band. The Stitchgiver, a homemade one string bass cobbled together from a 1978 Mercury Grand Marquis gas tank, was the beating heart of SLR. Watching Eaton whack away at that single string may have been their most entertaining aspect of the show. One thing that cannot be overlooked was just how much rhythm he produced with just one string.

The show was Redbull bluegrass, like slamming an espresso in a musical shot glass. The crowd was literally whooping and hollering as their show got underway. The main element that they borrowed from punk besides their shredding delivery was the two-minute structure of many of their songs. If you didn’t like one of the tunes, it was okay because it would be over soon. This was not my experience, I found myself truly locked into what was happening on stage. After I got my photos I headed back up to the balcony for the rest of the show. Split Lip Rayfield had a certain irreverence with songs like "A Little More Cocaine Please" and "I Used To Know Your Wife." It was obvious that while they were playing seriously they were not taking themselves too serious.

Additional highlights from the show included "Movin’ To Virginia" and "Kiss of Death." They ended the show just after 12:30 am. I was 31 and happy that my first show of this rotation around the sun was Split Lip Rayfield. Having only caught the end of their set a couple years back at Red Rocks, it was great to see them playing for a dedicated group of fans in this awesome venue. I would highly recommend to anyone who wants to have their face melted by a banjo, a mandolin and a one-string gas tank to head out and see Split Lip Rayfield next time they make it to town.

Nicholas' Photo Gallery

Friday, January 20, 2012

MusicMarauders Live! Episode Four

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

MusicMarauders Management & Publicity

We are excited to announce the next phase in MusicMarauders' expansion, MusicMarauders Management & Publicity! We felt it to be the next step in the natural progression of MM and after speaking with several musicians/friends, it was clear that it would be a move in the right direction! So as of January 18th, 2012 MM now offers management and publicity that includes: booking, street-teaming, poster/logo design, social media operations, event coverage and much more!

We will be announcing our initial client list/roster/partnerships on Friday, January 20th. We're very excited about our catalog as well as the potential of what is to come! We appreciate all of the support of our friends, family, clients and readers of MusicMarauders throughout the country as this new direction will be fueled by a grassroots movement of passionate individuals!

Please check out and "Like" our Facebook page Here:

Gratefully yours,

Justin Picard
Management & Publicity

Monday, January 16, 2012

Game 7 (Kang, Magner, Wall, Gould, Pujalet) 1.14.12

Quixote's True Blue
Denver, CO

Words By Nicholas Stock
Photos By Nicholas Stock & Carly Marthis
Audio Recording By Corey Sandoval
(Kind Recordings)
Video By Nicholas Stock

The long awaited two-night run of Game 7 was billed as the MusicMarauders Two Year Anniversary Celebration. Having been writing for MM for close to a year now, which has been a great experience overall, I was very excited to join in the festivities. J-man covered the first night so I picked up a few friends and headed down for night two.

I arrived early enough to catch a bit of Wisebird’s opening set. They were a foursome of wide brim hat wearing, bearded jammers who looked like they walked straight out of a Kerouac novel. Wisebird dabbled in bluesy song structures with a rockabilly twang. I would say the most striking thing about their playing was the distinct cleanliness of their sound. While not necessarily incredibly complex the music of Wisebird was tight and well thought out. They were an interesting juxtaposition for the night’s main event. I headed backstage with J-man for a quick interview with Magner before they took the stage around midnight.

This was the third outing of supergroup Game 7, a jam hybrid with Araon Magner of the Disco Biscuits, Michael Kang from String Cheese Incident, Particle’s rhythm section Darren Pujalet and Eric Gould, as well as Pete Wall from the Motet. Playing together for only the third time live this nascent collaboration showed incredible promise. As fans filtered in, many from STS9’s Fillmore show, shouts of Kang and Magner could be heard from the enthusiastic crowd. They opened with an original jam entitled Multiball 2. Here is the rest of their setlist.

Game 7 Live at Quixote's True Blue on January 14, 2012.

SET I: Multiball 2, Chicago> Mike’s Outro, Run Like Hell, La Femme, Time To Pretend, Howl At The Moon, Skyscrapper> MIA Jam> Da Funk> Feeling Older, Mind Over Matter, Neck Romancer, Come Together

ENCORE: Multiball 1

(Taken from onstage setlist.)

Game 7 was a fusing of styles as diverse as the members who made up the group. With the often-subtle mannered Michael Kang playing bandleader he passed around the jam like a hot potato. Scantily clad Bisco chicks and a random girl dressed in a bear suit danced passionately as the band eased into their two-plus hour set. It would have been easy for them to be an untz-fueled monster given the Particle and Bisco backgrounds, but honestly they were a fluid organic musical experience with an electronic edge.

Their version of Pink Floyd’s "Run Like Hell" was an inspired take with a trance-y bridge before they went right back into the tune to close. They performed a jam on MGMT’s "Time To Pretend," which had been played the night previous. However given the fact that they are a newly assembled endeavor still working on original material it was to be expected. The show flowed quickly with covers from Air, Daft Punk, as well as a version of Disco Biscuits’ "Neck Romancer." The show was incredibly balanced and it really displayed the musical prowess of everyone involved. It’s collaborations like this that reaffirm my faith in the jam scene. Unlike other musical realms, the amazing talent of the members of this community allows them to play with anyone, anytime.

On a Saturday night at Quixote’s we witnessed some serious musical ability. Most notable of which may have been Pete Wall who seemed to blast off about midset. He brought a new dynamic to his sound and was virtually evolving right before a captivated audience. Magner did what he does best all night killing it on the keys and adding his own sonic flair to the sound. Pujalet was a human metronome on the skins with Gould giving a pinpoint precision to his bass playing. They bookended the show with their Multiball 2 jam finishing around 2:30 AM. As the crowd spilled out in the streets I smiled to myself knowing that I got to see this sick lineup at the beginning. They have so much raw potential that I can only hope that they continue to find time to play together in the future. Happy Anniversary to MusicMarauders and I look forward to another amazing year of live music coverage.

Nicholas' Photo Gallery

Carly & J-man's Photo Gallery