|Lonnie Walker at The Tipsy Teapot|
The night opened up with the Boston based band of Radio Control. Radio Control delivers loud and fast paced garage punk that got the night off to a good start. Though there was the issue of the guitar coming unplugged from rocking too hard, they played it off well and the duo powered through a few more songs. However, when the touring bands of Railbird and The Rex Complex took the stage is when the night really started to pick up, and it was mainly due in part to the intensity and energy of vocalist and accordion player Rex Hussmann. The Rex Complex is like...accordion punk, and every minute of it was awesome. Towards the end of their set Rex ran rampant throughout the Teapot, standing on top of the bars and inciting a sing-a-long before they sent their set back over to Railbirds. I really enjoyed the way this joint-set was organized, and the best part is how seamlessly they transitioned from the mesmerizing indie pop sounds of Railbird to The Rex Complex. Railbird is another entity that needs to be tackled, because they were great. Lead by vocalist Sarah Pedinotti whose calculated and breath taking vocals grasped the attention of the crowded room. Both Railbird and The Rex Complex are two bands worth checking out, both out of New York and while boasting different styles they mesh together excellently.
Next up was Jack The Radio, a local band out of Raleigh who are coming out with a record at the beginning of April called "Pretty Money". Jack The Radio are a fusion of blues, country, Americana, and rock that lumps itself together into an exciting blend that gets heads bobbing and bodies swaying. It was bare bones rock n roll, and a refreshing taste of such for the night. After Jack The Radio was rockers mikingmirab whose punk sound brought something interesting to the table. They kicked out the stereotypical punk sounds, but filled it with interesting riffs, more interesting bass lines, and an energy that couldn't be denied. mikingmirab kept the crowds excitement and warranted a tiny drunken mosh by a few, but there was no doubting why this band is a Greenville favorite because they certainly kept their set interesting and entertaining.
Cassis Orange took the stage next and although the set was short it was a great one. Set up with just vocalist/keyboardist Autumn Ehinger and drummer Chris Hutcherson, the set was a bit more basic than usual, but it still had the qualities you'd look for in the set, the hooks that draw you in and the exciting climax that leaves you in awe. With the short set it was hard not to wish for a little bit more, but with how late it was getting into the night it had an understandable reasoning. Plus the set that followed after by Veelee was enough to leave me satisfied for the whole night.
Veelee was the second to last band to take the stage and quite frankly if Lonnie Walker wasn't playing for so much tonight then Veelee could have stolen the show. They had an excellent set that showcased what's gotten so many people talking about Veelee lately, they take the minimalist approach in terms of set up and instrumentation but completely maximize their possibilities, making for an incredibly entertaining set. The duo of Ginger Wagg and Matthew Park continue to blaze their path strongly through anything standing in their way, and even though they're already getting bigger as the days go by (coming off of their opening set for Superchunk at The Cat's Cradle), I'd imagine we'll be hearing even more about Veelee throughout this year because they're truly an act that needs to be seen and heard.
At around 1:30ish, Lonnie Walker took the stage and let us know that they'd be playing "as many songs as we can before 2:00 hits." Blasting through crowd favorites like "Summertime", "Back Home Inside With You", and their powerhouse of a song with "Teenage Poem" (which you can see played acoustically for their Bottom String Session at Hopscotch), Lonnie Walker left the crowd with a thirst for more but a realization that it was kind of 2:15 in the morning so that wasn't very possible. Either way the hometown band absolutely slayed, and the entire night they looked like they were up there having the time of their life. Plus it was great seeing the hometown crowd packed in tightly singing and dancing along, certainly a phenomenal way to end Night 2 of Spazz Fest. And with The Love Language, The Charming Youngsters, and Awol One still to come on Saturday, Spazz Fest still has more awesome to give.