Archive for the ‘The Smithereens’ Category

[ATTENDED: June 16, 2016] The Shelters

2016-06-16 20.11.09The Shelters opened for Guster.  I hadn’t heard of them before going to the show, so I really didn’t know what to expect from the band.  Sarah and I arrived as they were going on, so by the time we got situated we probably missed two or three songs.

The band paints an interesting visual picture.  On the left side is guitarist Chase Simpson.  He’s got long hair and plays interestingly shaped guitars.  In the middle is guitarist Josh Jove who has slicked back hair and tends to walk to the front of the stage to solo.  On the bass is Jacob Pillot (also slicked back hair) who sort of hangs back but keeps a great rhythm.  And then in the back is drummer Sebastian Harris with long hair (looking a bit like Kurt Cobain) who pounds the hell out of the drums.

Walking into the venue, I’m not sure what song they were playing but it struck me as sounding very L.A. rock (I don’t really know what that means, but I guessed it reminded me of some of the hard rock/metal bands from the 89s/90s).  The song was good and the band was solid, it just didn’t blow me away.  They played another song (both of these were sung by Jove, I believe) that was similarly rocking and enjoyable.

Then they played “Fortune Teller.”  Simpson sang this one and the whole tenor of the band changed.  The song was a bit trippier (whereas Jove has a rocker voice, Simpson has an almost folkie voice).  I loved the song immediately.  And every song after that was really great too. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: August 25, 2013] The Smithereens


Photo credit: Maryanne Mistretta (see below for link to her blog)

I’ve liked a number of Smithereens songs for many years.  I even bought their greatest hits.  But I never really think about them.  And yet, the opening bass line to “Blood and Roses” is one of the best opening bass lines in rock music.  It’s so deep and groovy.

But so imagine my surprise to see that The Smithereens were playing a free concert at Duke Island Park, about ten minutes from my house.  What was especially weird is that most of the free concerts are oldies singers (The Duprees) and cover bands (Tusk, THE B STREET BAND).  But here was the honest to God Smithereens.  Now, I realize they’re not remotely as popular as they were, but it was really them.  They’re from Carteret and Scotch Plains, NJ, so they were playing to a happy local crowd.  They also told some very funny stories about growing up in Somerset County (and going to the Blue Star).

They sounded amazing and Pat DiNizio’s voice hasn’t changed a bit in thirty some years.  (more…)

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