Really Late Show Review: THE Fest @ Casbah, 10/5/2007

I have no photos for this show, because I made a last minute decision to take the night “off.” I knew that the Justice show was coming up, and that I had a ton of Grand Canyon photos to deal with already, so it just didn’t happen.

We showed up while The Sundelles were playing. I ran into Chuck and Brandon, who both seemed thrilled that it was actually happening. Understandably so, since the whole thing was their “baby.” Props to them and everyone else involved in setting it up.

The Sundelles seemed a little more grown into themselves since the last time I saw them. I still think the singer comes off as a bit awkward, though. He tries to go for the whole engaging lead singer thing, but he doesn’t quite make it. Own that stage, man – it’s not something you can just make a stab at. You have to completely go for it.

Next up were The Sess, who pretty much killed. The vocals were kind of a little too screamy for my usual taste, but I’ll deal as long as the rest of the musicians continue to be as tight as they were that night. Very high energy, very engaging.

They were followed, quite naturally, by The Vultures. I’ve said plenty about them here, about how Chuck absolutely owns the stage and how I get a kick out of the contrast between his normal personality and his stage persona. So I won’t repeat myself here.

Next up were The Atoms, who I had only managed to see once before – at Sessions Fest, when I was super mellow and out of it thanks to a cold and the subsequent Dayquil I had ingested. Seeing them at the Casbah was a much better experience for me. They played some hyper-catchy punky music, and it sounded great, even if all their songs did sort of run together in the end. I think they probably had the shortest set of the evening, by far.

The second-to-last band on the bill were The Muslims, playing sans Emily but with a new bassist in her place. They sounded great, possibly one of their best shows so far. The new bassist fit right in, Matt is really finding his place as a singer and a frontman, and Matty was killing it on guitar. Super high energy and I couldn’t stand still while they were playing – which might have also had something to do with the amount of alcohol I had imbibed at that point…

The final band of the evening was The Prayers. I was expecting to hear their usual set centered around the songs on their God Save the Prayers EP, but was instead treated to a preview of some new songs they’ve been working on. Much less straight-up catchy pop, and a little more guitar noise. I liked them, even though I was bummed that they didn’t play “Loose Lips.” It was good to hear new stuff from such a familiar band, and none too soon – they’re off to England soon to play some dates in London and Manchester. Best of luck to them.

A big thanks to all the bands who played and all the people who managed to throw everything together. A bill with six bands takes a ton of coordination and cooperation to make sure that everyone plays a fair share of the time allotted and that no one gets screwed over because things are running too late. I think the Skull Kontrol boys have shown that they have their shit together enough to be able to handle things like this, so please, Tim Mays – give them more chances to do so.