Show Review: Taft Album Release @ Cheer Up Charlies (2.12)

TaftWe hit up good ol’ Cheer Up Charlies Thursday night to support our friends at Punctum Records as they released Taft‘s Groove Redundant…they were joined by Isaiah the Mosaic, Lomelda and Sweet Spirit helped them close out in style.  I’d have to say it was a pretty impressive line-up, and a rather impressive crowd.

Read on for our thoughts on the show and some photos from B. Gray.

My apologies to local boys Isaiah the Mosaic; I was running behind on things and just missed their set as I was walking up to the venue.  I know it was great, and I know it had lights; I saw them taking them down!

For me, Lomelda kicked off the night. They’ve got to be one of the more impressive acts banging around the local Texas circuit.  They definitely have a strong hold on the progressive indie rock movement.  I love the little bits of jazz guitar and the constant switch of time signatures that continue throughout their set…and each song, really. And, if I were to talk about the band’s greatest instrument, it definitely has to go to Hannah.  Her pipes are incredible, and that range is something remarkable.  If you get a chance to catch them, you’ll be grateful.

Taft definitely drew a nice solid crowd, and they provided the audience with exactly what they came for on the night.  Taft is a solid performer, his voice echoing through the room with such a voice that it was hard not just give him your attention. There are some definite tonal qualities that resemble Kevin Barnes; it’s a pretty interesting touch that adds a further layer of dynamism to the group.  And, you can’t say there’s not a more solid group to back him up; they’re a well-oiled machine, and even some of Austin’s best musicians (who I chatted with at the show) were in awe of such a performance. And it never hurts to have an Andrew Stevens in your corner.

I’d also like to note that even though it was the band’s album release, I dig that they didn’t headline.  I think it gave a lot of people the option to stick around before things got too late. That being said, missing Sweet Spirit is never a great option.

Sweet Spirit is one of those bands, or rather the band, that if I was to nominate a band to explode into the national scene (in case that matters), this would be the one.  Sabrina Ellis and Andrew Cashen have this group locking into their groove at the moment, and it’s difficult to see anything slowing them down.  Sabrina, as always, brings this magnetism to the stage, but it’s also nice to see her rock the guitar from time to time. Even with a nine-piece band, featuring horns and back up singers, the group sounded tighter than most acts I’ve caught as of late.  Plus, it’s especially enjoyable to see those parts enjoying themselves, even when they’re not the focus of a particular track.

All in all, just a rad night of great local music.  If you missed it, check the photos to imagine being there.

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