2003 has been the year of the Jealous Sound. A new album, a supportive label, a feature in SPIN, even a opening stint for the Foo Fighters - this band is on the cusp of stardom.
Someone forgot to tell the kids in Iowa City, though, as roughly two-to-three dozen kids showed up over the course of the evening, myself and Moldy included.
The New Trust didn't care, though. They opened the show with a bang, and could have cared less if they were playing for 5 or 500 people - they were in it for the rock. The New Trust consists of Josh from the Velvet Teen and Michael from Benton Falls, and their sound is sort of an amalgamation between those two bands - it's more punk/hardcore influenced than the former, but not as nearly plodding and methodical as the latter. Josh's vocals are absolutely gorgeous, and combined with their unique sound, they won over Moldy [which is a very difficult thing to do]. I was already won over by their self-released EP that Slowdance Records is helping distribute, so their live show was just icing on their beautifully designed cake that is their CD [seriously, the packaging on this thing is nothing short of breathtaking]. So anyway, the final score was New Trust - 1, Iowa City - 0.
Local act Nolan was up next, and while I knew they looked familiar, I couldn't place it. After talking with the female guitarist of the New Trust [who also looked incredibly familiar], I realized Nolan was one of the opening acts at the Rainer Maria / Mates of State show in Galesburg [at which the New Trust's guitarist was selling merch for those bands]. To quote my review from before for Nolan, they sounded like "a Mineral ripoff with more uptempo songs." They also felt the need to announce that they hadn't practiced in weeks, and even though they sounded good and tight, it was annoying because you kept on wondering if maybe they *were* messing up, and you just couldn't tell. So once again, Nolan slips by my radar with not so much as a blip of recognition. Sorry, boys.
Finally, the band everyone [all 25 of us] were there to see, the Jealous Sound, took the stage. While Blair and company looked less than thrilled at the turnout, they didn't let it affect their performance. Kicking their set off with "Hope," from their wonderful debut full-length Kill Them With Kindness, the band swept me away for the next hour or so. Playing 3/4s of their full-length as well as every song off their self-titled EP, everyone in the audience who was familiar with the band got to hear pretty much everything they wanted. Standouts for me included "The Fold Out," "The Gift Horse," and the rocking, top-40-hit-in-an-alternate-universe "Naive." The stage banter was funny [with Blair accidentally calling the city "Iowa Falls," then apologizing profusely], the musicianship was tight [with not a single guitar effect missed by Pedro], and the overall atmosphere was one of a singalong [at least for the handful of people, including me, who knew the words].
The Jealous Sound played like pros, and proved to their small-yet-rabid crowd just why they should be huge. I, for one, didn't mind the small crowd - it's obvious that the next time they come around, the place will be much, much fuller.
THE JEALOUS SOUND'S SETLIST
Does That Make Sense
The Fold Out
For Once In Your Life
The Gift Horse
What's Wrong Is Everywhere
Above The News