left my buddies knuckles, the piledriver, and mr. amsterdam to their nefarious plans (including the assault of municipal property) and headed down to the effin cavern to catch a midweek show.
first up were the AM Ramblers, who I saw a couple months ago at Hailey's. Once again, if bluegrass is your thing, you can't do much better than these guys. Great 4-part harmonies. Very talented musicians.
Next up was Three Fantastic, from Houston. 4-man band - 3 guitars plus drums. saw these guys over a year ago at the Liquid Lounge, and was floored by 'em. i described the frontman as a jim morrison impersonator - howling voice, high-energy, total showman. this time - not as much. the lead seems to have calmed down somewhat over the last year or so, or the songwriting has changed quite a bit (or i'm just not remembering it very well). these guys can rock, no doubt - amazing playing from both guitar players. the vocal parts seemed almost uh, how can i describe it - loungish? i'm not sayin they were bad (in fact, i dug his voice), but you end up with an unusual combination of melt-your-face guitar playin and lounge singing. it was definitely unique and interesting, i'll say that. definitely worth checking out, if you get the chance.
What Made Milwaukee Famous headlined. was really looking forward to their set, as i really liked what i heard on their cd. only a 4-man band last night (apparently the lead guitarist was sick) - guitar, keys, bass, drum. fairly large group of loyal fans singin along with all the songs (and by fairly large i mean like 7 or 8). definitely a very high concentration of Rhythmically Impaired Dancers (gawd bless 'em). some songs definitely had a happy weezer-ish pop vibe, others were more anthemic and coldplay-ish, but with more masculine vocals (great voice on that dude, btw). lead was very funny, very engaging. i definitely enjoyed the anthemic songs more - the others i could take or leave. overall, 'twas a nice set.