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Sainthood Reps/Weatherbox/Ghost Thrower: live in Allstonlive in Allston (2011)
Reviewer Rating: 4
Contributed by: InaGreendaseInaGreendase
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Yale, MA. While this show took place at O'Brien's Pub in Allston, that first sentence is a band name, and they were one of the two local openers on this otherwise really solid bill. Now, that's probably more harsh than it's meant to be--Yale, MA played a competent take on what I can only describe as.
Yale, MA. While this show took place at O'Brien's Pub in Allston, that first sentence is a band name, and they were one of the two local openers on this otherwise really solid bill. Now, that's probably more harsh than it's meant to be--Yale, MA played a competent take on what I can only describe as aggressive, hostile power-pop. But it was the kind of intermittently sloppy and forgettable stuff that got a little old after 15 minutes or so. It wasn't offensive by any means, though, and it passed the time well enough.
Weatherbox seemingly elected to play next, despite having a pretty considerable stable of material to play compared to Sainthood Reps' lone full-length (plus their one song on that O'Brother split, I guess). Decked out in matching gray custodial outfits of some sort, they also had the bigger crowd, from dudes psyched to sing along to the angular hooks of American Art staples like "I Worship Raw Beats" and "Trippin' the Life Fantastic" (and of course, the barked, Dismemberment Plan-ish "Broken Glowsticks") to those seemingly speechless in awe of the band's controlled, frantic guitar slashes on cuts like "Secret Muslim" (from their new EP, Follow the Rattle of the Afghan Guitar) and "Contactus, The Little Green Men." Frontman Brian Warren sneered his nasal melodies into the barely audible mic while standing at a peculiar angle to it, and his backing band had a systematic energy about the way they played. Performance-wise, it wasn't 100 percent spot-on, but it was usually pretty close. It's probably the tightest Weatherbox has sounded on a tour since their run in 2007 supporting Cartel, and they fit a wide range of material into a cohesive and engaging 42 minutes.
Set list (10:21-11:03):
A noticeable chunk of the crowd then departed, leaving Sainthood Reps to play for a dozen-or-so spectators up front and a handful of other, perhaps less interested bar patrons further in the back who basked in the glow of the hated New York Jets and their impending Monday Night Football win. The Long Islanders on stage were pleased at the victory (even talking a little sports with the crowd), but otherwise rocked through a set of their usual noisy and especially loud "alternative" rock with moody abandon. I say "alternative," because the band's sound is stooped more in the Nirvanas and Jesus Lizards of the early '90s than any other questionable era, really. Vocalist/guitarist Francesco Montesanto snarled disconsolation into the mic while his bandmates used the space of the stage to roam and thrash about--guitarist/vocalist Derrick Sherman was face-to-strings at one point, and at another moment violently pulling his amp towards his instrument for feedback. As loudly as possible, they played the lion's share of their recent full-length, Monoculture, over the course of a coarse half-hour, then promptly set their weapons down after the destructive, screeching finish to album closer "Widow." The song's an indictment of friends leaving Long Island for the hipper confines of Brooklyn lofts, and you wondered if maybe the Allston faithful could relate.
Set list (11:23-11:55):
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