Gathering of the Clouds, 10/21/10 - 10/23/10

Categories: Concert Reviews

Overcasters • Swayback • Buckingham Squares • Gangcharger
Achille Lauro • Light Travels Faster • Glass Homes • Juliet Mission
Action Packed Thrill Ride • Hearts in Space • Anna.Martina.Ross
10.21.10 - 10.23.10 | The Weather Center, Denver, CO

Overcasters put together a great sound system for this show, and it made everyone sound better than usual. Light Travels Faster had a lively set that it played with a good balance of humor and focused intensity. As usual, the trio closed its set with a cover of the Stooges' "Search and Destroy." Christopher Rigel used his amp, the mike stand and the drums -- he probably would have used Todd Spriggs's head, too, if Spriggs had let him -- to beat the guitar frets for the chaotic ending of the song.

Light Travels Faster - October 21, 2010.jpg
Tom Murphy
Light Travels Faster

Not since the days of the now-defunct Emerald City has anyone seen Achille Lauro much outside the context of a rock club or other such venue. One of the songs, as yet unreleased, which began with a hypnotic synth drone drawn out like something from Dark Side of the Moon, remains one of the band's best to date, and its closing number, "Unicorns and Consent," sounded like someone took an inspired mistake in a synth line and made it into a sample to break conventional ideas of melody.

Achille Lauro - October 21, 2010.jpg
Tom Murphy
Achille Lauro

Perhaps Gangcharger has gotten a lot better in the last few months, or maybe it was the fact that Ethan Ward's parents were at the show and he wanted the band to play better than usual, but there was some edge in the performance to match that sound in the music. It was also possible to hear the nuances in the Gangcharger songs in a way that you don't often get on most sound systems.

Gangcharger - October 21, 2010.jpg
Tom Murphy

The clarity made it possible to appreciate the subtle changes Ward uses in his guitar progressions and how that fits into the rhythm and Paige Peterson's noise-scaping. Adam Rojo and Ward seemed to hurl sounds from the stage with sudden gestures when songs peaked. The act played pretty much entirely from its new album, Free Exhaust, and never sounded better.

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