Review: Phaze, Shame Thugs, John Flannelly @ Charlie’s (6/30/14)

Bands: Soft Eyes, Phaze, Shame Thugs, John Flannelly
Date: Monday, June 30, 2014
Venue: Charlie’s Kitchen [Cambridge]

This was SHAMEFUL to admit it, my first Charlie’s Kitchen experience. Don’t get me wrong here, I always see the events, the spectacular musical parties thrown by some of the finest Boston bookers, FAST APPLE, on Monday nights. I was able to make things work, unfortunately not for the entire duration of the show. Very bummed I missed seeing Soft Eyes – the home spun psych ventures of Luke Goudreault (formerly of MMOSS, The MIGS!!!, and New Highway Hymnal) whose live band also includes Rachel Neveu (formerly of MMOSS), drummer Travis Hagan (Fat Creeps, NHH), and possibly some other members that I did not see roaming the venue. Do head over to the SE BC and stream Lazy Life in its mono White Fencian/Migsian chromatic splendor.

John Flannelly of Indiana got things started ground level as he worked on his keyboard and pedals set-up, delivering what sounded like an experimental combo of beats and loop effects. John’s take on music is certainly deeper in the sense that I had not a clue what he was going for and perhaps nobody did except for the performer himself. I found the unpredictability and non-conventional nature of his set-up somewhat more fascinating than the actual rhythmic collage. http://johnflannelly.bandcamp.com/

Next up was the bass/keyboard duo $hame Thug$, also from Indiana and on tour with John Flannelly. I don’t think I will be forgetting their set anytime soon at least not their first song which prominently featured a hip-hop sample of this guy shouting YEAH!. The keyboardist rapped with some voice modulated echo throughout the course of the set. I will say I haven’t really seen any band like SHAME THUGS – the taping of individual keys, the total surreal dreamy r&b mood – though maybe the closest thing to them I’ve heard is Kitty Pryde so take that for whatever, but the Thugs are rawer which I like.

PHAZE get ready KLYAMers, PHAZE is a band you’ll be hearing about a lot more. At least from me and hopefully beyond and beyond. Jesse DeFrancesco is at the helm of this rock ‘n roll band, which, live, we have Nick on drums. PHAZE is riffy rock ‘n roll, bluesy in some spots, anchored in all by Jesse’s prepunk singin and tenacity for going hard and going nuts. On recording PHAZE is chiller (real real neat, just wait and see), but with the drumming, these guys wallop. Being in the audience and hearing PHAZE for the first time was quite like when I first saw The Migs. All excitement, the ‘this is really special, I’m grateful I’m here right now’ feeling. Specially on “Backwards”. Ya know! http://allstontapes.bandcamp.com/releases

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