Tuesday, May 25, 2010

No Sleeping at the Middle East

My forth show in six days, I was starting to wear down when I decided to check out For Sleeping or Jumping at the Middle East Upstairs on April 5, 2010. It was also my third in this period that took place at the Middle East. Perhaps they'll give me a room there or at least a frequent buyers card? Either way, I was still excited to see a different brand of noise at the show. Its been a while since I got to witness some music of the heavier variety but For Sleeping or Jumping aptly filled the void with their performance.

I got to the venue right as Vending Machetes were beginning. I had no prior knowledge of the band but I ended up enjoing their set quite a bit. Unfortunately for the group, their clever name wasn't getting much recognition that night since the ticket had them listed as The Vending Machines. The group sounded like a mixture of GlassJaw and Incubus spattered with some influence from other 90s alternative classics. Singer Abe Kimball had a wavering delivery that definitely reminded me of Daryl Palumbo. Some of the more inventive guitar lines reminded me of some of my favorite bands from the 90s like Jawbox and Shudder to Think. Their debut EP is coming out soon and I'm exciting to hear what they can pull off in the studio.

For Sleeping or Jumping started things off with the chugging intro from their debut EP. Their instruments created a pulsing build as distorted guitars worked themselves into a thick lather. Jenny Tuite of The Dirty Dishes added some atmospheric background vocals to the song to aid in its haunting quality. The group proceeded to play all the tracks from their debut with a few surprises along the way. Abe from Vending Machetes added vocals to the faster, rock-oriented songs like "Tag You're It". "Lexi" displayed the groups proficiency in the technical metal realm. It featured drummer Taylor Pile punishing his drum heads while Tom C's guttural screams were ready to melt the microphone. Meanwhile guitarist Ryan Leist was tearing apart the fretboard and Tom was adding dissonant guitar squeals to an already brutal breakdown. Their debut can be heard below:

<a href="http://forsleepingorjumping.bandcamp.com/album/self-titled">Song 1 by For Sleeping or Jumping</a>

In between songs, there was your typically banter with jokes about Terri Schiavo, etc. You know, the kind of stuff bands are always talking about. They certainly kept things interesting by throwing in a cover of t.A.T.u.'s "All the Things She Said" with vocals by Geneva Williams. I had previously joked about doing a hardcore version of the track and to see it actually come to fruition was something else. The final song the group performed was the highlight for me. It was a long instrumental featuring a crescendo with Eric Messihi's bass swelling over a wall of sound and an impressive saxophone solo from Amber Woodhouse. It was a fresh way to end an enjoyable set. What was most surprising about their performance was their versatility as they transitioned between metal and post-rock atmospherics. They left me interested in what they will come out with next and thats what all good bands are able to do. Videos from the performance are below including the "All the Things Shed Said" cover.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! You're blog really picked up, looks great!!!