Strange Mistress released their debut album Electric Psychedelic Pussycat Swingers Club on Friday August 9th at Bar 702 with a four band concert. The Solid Suns, Dinosaur Hypnosis and The Leather Bound Crooks also played the venue in support of the albums release.The venue was big, open and had decorated walls that brought an artist feel to a bar which I rarely see.
Just hearing “Indigo” and “Take” I thought The Solid Suns had one of the best mixtures of blues and hard rock music I have heard in Las Vegas. “Indigo” sounds like an argument between a hard and heavy rock guitar and the lonely, smooth, blues vocals of Jon Gamboa. The song is tight in its transitions and breaks out with a vengeance. “Take” has more of an emphasis on the bass and drums which flowed through the song nicely. The guitar solo came out of nowhere and ended too quickly. The under water sounding guitar of “Holes” became one of my favorite moments of their set. Gamboa’s pleading vocals drive the song. I wish the track had more of the same energy it had at the beginning, than it had in the middle and the end. The ominous drums of “MPDG” break into amplified guitar and anguished vocals. The riff reminded me of Audioslave
Dinosaur Hypnosis is a funky, blues, rock infused up and coming band that will soon be getting more exposure. I have seen this band play twice and the song “Little Brown Bottles” is what I remember about them most. The velvety smooth voice of Zac Herring brings you in and the hook from lead guitarist Kurtis Mize makes you stay. This song was also a moment in the set where Mize was the most playful dancing around to the beat. The personality of the band shone through when each member made jokes throughout their set. Dream Tongue is a night night lullaby of soothing guitar, slow beat and a soft voice. It made me want to lay in bed and listen to it until I fell asleep with a smile on my face. The more I listened to it I heard Jeff Buckley from his album Grace. The vocals on “Wake Up In The Mourning” makes Zac sound like he is in an echo chamber and adds something unique to the track. The drum work for “Hungry” was the best of the night for Billy Kesner. Going forward I hope to see more blues and jazz in their music rather than rock. Overall it was a really good performance.
Kevin Kilfeather from Strange Mistress was a shot through a cannon ball of energy and definitely showed signs of an excellent showman. His delivery while singing was quick, infectious and excited the crowd. The range of his voice expanded from a slow bass to a loud growl. The artists I thought he sounded most like were Elvis, Jim Morrison, Danzig and Jason Ross from Seven Mary Three. A.J Gerst was dressed in a shirt, tie and I heard multiple women screaming for him signaling that he is the heartthrob of the band. My favorite songs of his that he played was “The Fear” and “No One Suspects The Butterfly.” He definitely added to the funk of both of these songs. He was quiet while playing. However, toward the end of the set he did make a joke showing some of his personality which I was glad to see. The band played a cover by Howlin Wolf called “Killing Floor.” At the end of the song Vladi Pop exploded into a drum solo that seemed to go on forever and was one of the highlights of the bands performance. They also had a table near the stage where they were selling their new album and other merchandise.
Leather Bound Crooks closed the show. The harmonies were beautiful, surprising and impacting. The guitar in “Pacific Coast Highway” was soothing, flowing and seemed to never end. The blues filled force and fun of “Yellow Tail” grabbed me by the ears and brought me into its groove. Listening to Leather Bound Crooks was reminiscent of acoustic style Matchbox 20 with elements of Alice in Chains and Mad Season.