by Ora “Tre” Brasel
The moment we walked into Jack Rabbits, it was very evident from all of the bright colors, styles of haircuts and overall sense of kindness and warmth, this was an EMO concert. Though I have seen an act here or there that are lumped into this label of music, I had not ever been to a show completely made up of such acts. All of the music was very well written, performed, and seemed to have a positive effect on the entire audience (me included). It was quite refreshing to go out to a show where it wasn’t the cool thing for everyone to be all grumpy, grouchy, or too cool for school. If other EMO shows have this much heart and soul to offer on a regular basis then gladly sign me up as someone who will be happy to stand up and defend this music.
The first act was Tyler Brown Williams, who was just merely a guy armed with his acoustic guitar and some very heartfelt songs. I would like to applaud him for having the bravery to express himself. After all what fun would music be if everything were always the same?
Up next was the very unique performer Stephen Jerzak, who I found really hard not to crack a smile while listening to. Even if his vocals were a bit weird to my ear at first there was just something about his overall sound that made you want to keep listening, and his comical comments between and during songs went over very well. It was simply just a light, happy, and fun filled set that proved how much fun music could be when people aren’t judgmental about every little thing in the book.
The Ready Set was the next band on stage, and they were the only band on the evening to bring out actual electric guitars, and not just the acoustic plug-in variety. They also used drum machines, a unique light show, and the auto-tune program for vocals, to bring together the styles of EMO and popular dance music. The end result was quite a spectacular performance that had me singing along to their instructions, and pumping my hands in the air along with the music.
Fred Mascherino aka the Color Fred, was actually the only performer on the night that I had any previous knowledge of before the show and this was only from his days of playing with Taking Back Sunday. He really has an impressive live voice that manages to bring the listener in every bit as close as his CD does, and considering how good his CD is, that is no small feet to do. He also provided back-stories to the songs when he was performing and this seemed to involve the audience a great deal more by his personal touch.
The very last band of the evening was The Scene Aesthetic, a two-person group, if you didn’t count the large crowd that was singing along as on every song. People seemed more ecstatic about this performance than all of the rest, or at least the majority of them did. They had great lyrics, and obviously a dedicated fan-base, but perhaps if I could have heard some of their songs without audience participation I would have been more impressed.
It was truly refreshing to experience a show where people seemed so content just to be together to listen and enjoy music on the most equal of terms.
A Summer To Remember Tour
by Ora “Tre” Brasel