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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Brass City Brew Fest 9/12/09

Looking back a couple days after the fact, this was a very good show for the band. Arriving at the Brewfest about 20 minutes before show time, I noticed a couple things that might beome issues during the performance. The stage was a nice permanent structure, solid concrete and very deep, but during the soundcheck the drums seemed to be under mic’ed a bit and Jake didn’t look like he felt well. The rain of thd day before held off and after a little bit of noodling they launched into the genesis of a new song, a melodic and bouncy jam that had a slightly symphonic feel. This was quite enjoyable and flowed right into Sea Of Wisdom. This song really stretched out, with soaring vocals and firm rhythm, Jeffrey broke out a “Fly Me To The Moon” tease that he repeated during the jam. Guillotine Machine followed and was a slug-fest between Jeff and Jason. I noticed the levels were near perfect, moving 5 feet to the right of center and Jason was thundering, 5 feet to the left and Jeffrey was dominant. They had a very good sound system for the show, Drew the soundman hit all the marks and the sound really shined. Any questions about how Jake felt were answered as Virtual Circle bubbled up, this song is a vocal showcase for Jason and Jake and moves at a breakneck pace with Jake just a blur and yet still fits in with the band’s jammy feel. Jeffrey echoed “My Favorite Things’ teases throughout as the song dissolves.

Dynne started slow and steady, building in fervor but still controlled and firm as it leads into Bri, another soulful song , stout and powerful but still showing restraint as it flows along . Purple Trees begins and live this is a crowd-pleaser and I feel the closest to a traditional single that Conundrum has to offer. The crowd was pretty interesting, its as if the band was playing at the first hour of a 1,000 person, 6 hour keg party. If someone liked the music, they were vocal and made sure the guys knew they were appreciated! They started into Killing Time which is a monster piece, a complex jam that culminates in a fury of feedback and rhythm, I just adore hearing this song. Conundrum climaxed the show, a fitting closer, Conundrum echoes a lot of the musical themes of the album and sums up the set quite nicely. All things considered, the set came off very well, the guys amaze me, nothing phases them, they’re just at ease playing to 20 as playing to hundreds. After the show they talked to some new fans, took some pictures and enjoyed the moment.

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