Sunday, February 9

Let's See a Show!: CHAPPO feat. Royal Teeth and TEAM

It's been a minute since I've gone to see a concert, but the good folks at Crash-Avenue PR were putting on an evening at Stubb's, which is quickly becoming one of my go-to show places. How did the event stack up to past nights at Stubb's? Well, let's dive right in!

First, I must mention that the dedication of Austin concertgoers is pretty impressive. The city has been under a cold spell lately, with temperatures dipping into the 20s. Of course, being a native of Chicago, I should consider that "shorts and a t-shirt" weather, but I haven't experienced a full Chicago winter in eight years, so give me a break. But you'd hardly believe it was cold outside with how packed the venue was. Good job, Austinites.

TEAM led off the evening with a performance heavy on the "hoo-oohs" and lots of falsetto, psychedelic vocals. I was digging 'em, and especially enjoyed the high-fives and handshakes in between songs. Lead singer Rico Andradi announced that this was only the third time the band had played together, which may have explained the congratulations after successfully completing a tune. I know MY band was not that sharp after just three sessions, but then again, I assume TEAM has practiced a bit more. Anyway, a good way to begin the night.

Royal Teeth was up next, and brought a rabid following around with them–they asked who had seen them before, and the hands that shot up were probably about 70% of the crowd. Vocalists Gary Larsen (as far as I know, he does not publish cartoons) and Nora Patterson had a really fun chemistry, hopping around the stage and acting a fool as they harmonized over old and new songs alike. Royal Teeth is also extremely crowd-friendly, asking for audience sing-alongs and even grabbing someone's iPhone and shooting an on-stage video with it. By the end of the set, Larsen had grabbed a floor tom and headed into the crowd, banging it in the center of the large circle that had formed. On a side note, I love that the proper response to "How are you doing tonight?" is a lot of yelling and hollering. Good times.

CHAPPO wrapped up the night; immediately I felt like I was watching a futureistic film. They're very big in creating a mysterious atmosphere, with light effects, smoke, and costume changes–I definitely spotted a cowboy getup that I may need to consider investing in. I do live in Texas now, after all. And their shadows projected onto the wall behind them certainly looked like some of Tim Burton's creations.

Musically, the Brooklyn-based group certainly embraces psychedelic rock, with pulsating drums and synths like nobody's business. Lead singer Alex Chappo also found his way into the crowd to pound on a tom drum and do some singing. Apparently it's a trend at Stubb's. But hey, making the audience feel like an integral part of the show is always a good thing, so kudos for that. Until next time, keep on rockin'!

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