It seems like our parents' vinyl catalog is making a comeback. Not only in the used-new vinyl arrival shelves, but as a focal point to a lot of bands trying to recapture the heart of rock and roll. So far no one has topped The News with their channeling of the past, but I still feel confident that one of these bands is putting Sports and Fore! on repeat somewhere.
Along with AM Taxi and The Gaslight Anthem covering Jersey's best workaholic Springsteen rock, we go back with Doc to 1986, and Steel Train's new self-titled album is the soundtrack that the late-great John Hughes never got a hold of for one of his films. It's drenched in pop from an era we tend to shun for its new wave excellence and super catchy choruses.
It's okay. We all love the '80s. Don't deny it.
So how does Steel Train's live show hold up? Pretty damn good. Opening for the tour was a spirited newcomer and veteran and long time friend of the band.
Young the Giant is certainly a band to watch in the coming year. With their debut album slated for an October release, they take the stage with quite a show of New York rock and sonic landscapes worthy of their opening slot earlier this year with Minus the Bear. There's feeling of spiritual exoneration expressed in the band's life show. Here's hoping it pulls off the same on record.
Do we really need to go into my love and respect for Matt Embree? The man continues to create music well above the bar and held onto by a dedicated core of fans. Embree took to the stage with songs (even a new one) from his Love You Moon solo project. He even did an impromptu, freestyle reggae medley just for the Austin crowd who were keeping beat along with their hands. Ladies and gentleman, a true talent of an opener.
Laced with his throwback vintage Fender, Jack Antonoff belted out the "Bullet" as an opener laced in ColecoVision and the "new" Coke. The rest of the band is on key, working as one big harmony that just saturates the room. Evan Winiker's bass is full and the keys from Justin Huey only add as another line of melody to the already bright set. The band thanked the crowd with "Road Song," and we were all a bit reminded that supporting hard working music is a necessity. We need to nurture some bands and let them grow, instead of asking for the same KFC bowls of mess.
God bless American mediocrity.
Along with the night's cover of "Dancing in the Dark," Steel Train brought us back to a time of pop-laden innocents and scruffies. There was no fear of emanate doom on all cylinders of the future world. There was only the few of us playing Atari and waiting for the next Molly Ringwald flick.
Those were the days. I'm going to watch Ghostbusters on AMC now.