CD102.5 Summer Kick Off Showcase Made a Dancer Out of You
Take everything you know about local music, and re-evaluate it all. Friday, May 23rd at Skully’s Music Diner, three bands, The Worn Flints, Turtle Island and She Bears, proved Columbus to be a cesspool for talented, brilliant musicians.
The Worn Flints: Best On-Stage Performance
The second this three-piece hit the stage, rock ‘n roll was pulsing through each and every concert-goers veins. The bands’ versatile sounds of blues, psychedelics, desert rock and classic rock appeal to an array of listeners, drawing in the initial “Summer Kick-Off” crowd. Lead vocals and guitarists, Kenny Stiegele, used every inch of his body in order to further communicate the sounds of the Worn Flints. Each hair-whip, hip-thrust, and fist-pump encouraged an infectious energy of carefree, rock ‘n roll dancing that erupted on the dance floor. Observed by many, Kenny’s eccentric energy resembles that of Jim Morrison and Jack Black of Tenacious D, extremely avant-garde and unconventional—quite a difficult skill to master. Kenny strutted from stage left to stage right, throwing his head backwards and forwards, making the audience dizzy as he shredded his guitar in dozens of solos. We were in awe.
The three men are a well-oiled machine, in perfect synchronicity with one anther, although, not in a fashion too rehearsed. Jacob Smith, the-drummer-with-all-the-smiles, and bassist, Steve Trabulsi, who carries the unique rhythm, tastefully accompany Kenny’s vociferous vocals. The Columbus’ band began their set with their loudest track, “If I Stay Awake,” starting the show off with screaming vocals, startling rhythms and riffy guitar solo’s, giving the local showcase a hell of a start. This October 2013 track, released from the If I Stay Awake album, first put the band on the grid in Columbus, and they’re heatin’ up fast.
Turtle Island: Best Psychedelic-Experimental Rock Band
It’s at the point in the night where the crowd is at its full potential, people are boozing, and the second band is about to turn Skully’s into the Summer Kick-Off party we had all hoped for.
Turtle Island is a five-piece band, based out of Columbus, Ohio, dabbling in psychedelic, experimental and dream-pop sounds. The five guys, their dirty barefoot feet and long hair take the stage after The Worn Flints.
Turtle Island opens their set with a fuzzy, psychedelic, rock-ballad, “Panthergasm,” guiding the crowd in throwing their heads from front-to-back, their bodies creating a massive wave in the audience. The track pulls into “Fuzzy Brain,” from the bands’ 2013 release, Twelve Together of Love Rockets, and the crowd fully commits to Turtle Island’s set.
With sounds relative to the Flaming Lips, Tame Impala and Foxygen, Turtle Island is hilariously sarcastic and playful, “pulling off” this image due to the boys’ sheer talent—not to mention they’re all under 21 years old. The audience erupted as Turtle Island began to play the first chord of “Taxman” by The Beatles, Dallin’s (guitar and vocals) vocals entirely embodying all the necessary components of George Harrison. Turtle Island became fairly active in response to the highly enthusiastic crowd, finishing the set with a plunge into the crowd.
Turtle Island is a band of five young guys, all exceptionally odd, wildly knowledge and talented. A band that masters outlandish behavior and experimental psych-rock, all on one stage, you don’t want to miss out. Check Turtle Island out this summer.
She Bears: Best Performance of New Record
Your classically good-looking indie rock band is here, look no further.
Front man and lead vocals, Stephen Pence, has a soothing, honeyed voice, delivering catchy rhythms and sweet melodies, drawing the moths to the flame. The band’s 2014 album release We Will Be Fossils kicked off a May tour for the four boys, working their way from Athens, to Baltimore, to New York City, and Columbus for the Summer Showcase.
She Bears exceeds the typical “indie-rock” stereotype, writing tracks with hints of Minus the Bear influence, Modest Mouse instrumentals, and percussion similar to Young the Giant. The boys played as the third and last band on the bill, playing a very polished set, sounding highly prepared for their performance—always a good thing. The crowd shut their eyes, and let the melodies carry their weight from left to right, creating a slow sway across the audience. The new record is wonderfully cohesive, a smooth transition existing between each track. She Bears does an exceptional job in involving the audience lyrically, and through emphasis on vocals, creating a unique “She Bears” experience for each viewer.
All photos by Ben Goldfarb – CD102.5 Promotions and Marketing Intern.