A Night of Pop Rocks
The Almost, This Providence, Anarbor, and The Dares plus an exclusive interview with The Dares
September 24, 2009
Culture Room, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
The Dares, Anarbor, This Providence and The Almost arrived to Ft. Lauderdale’s Culture Room on September 24 for their second stop on their southern tour. The bands took over the little shopping mall as the touring-dirty-rock stars we all love to ogle at.
I was lucky enough to meet with the trio of the California sweeties The Dares before the show. “We’re just trying to get the right stuff behind us, get the momentum going with the touring before we attack!” said vocalist Ben Peterson. A set of twins — Ben and Matt Peterson (drums) — along with their buddy Martin Lascano (bassist) are the new boys on tour and can’t wait to start “daring” their tour mates because they themselves “do some pretty daring things,” Matt admits.
The Dares, Anarbor, This Providence and The Almost graced us with performances full of rhythmic guitar solos and drum crazes worthy of grinding, jumping, swaying and exhausting our very liveliness, of leaving blood, sweat and tears on that floor.
The boys opened the show with “Two Left Feet” and “Carpe Diem,” with guitar-swivels to pump a crowd up for days, playing tunes right off their debut album, which drops early next year. But in all honestly they must’ve been thinking, “Why do we waste our time?” because the crowd did not cooperate with their amazing lyrics and stunning stage presence. And while Ben serenaded the crowd with blonde locks and sweat streaming down his neck, the crowd just seemed to stare at them, probably too worried to mess up their hair.
Anarbor followed with their typical ardent lyrics, bathing the audience with sweat and enticing a little action from the motionless spectators. Anarbor is the band to turn up and groove to with their catchy tunes, not to mention Slade’s scruffy charm and nose loop being the object of any girl’s obsession. For some grooving and singing to Anarbor is the thrill they live for, for others, like the giggling girl up front, it’s trying to untie Slade’s Vans. Slade recovered after the attempt at his life, however, and his rendition of “Always Dirty, Never Clean,” “Let The Games Begin” and “You and I,” won the girls over.
This Providence and their bare chested drummer, Andy Horst, made the crowd roar with “My Beautiful Rescue.” Teen girls and tattooed men alike, all over the venue, were singing along to lead vocalist Daniel Young’s 21st century anthem of teen infatuation. Young brought out a little tambourine and swooshed his guitar around a couple of times before enthusing us with an “Are you guys excited for The Almost?” That made it obvious the majority of the house was packed with anticipating Aaron-lovers.
Although these four bands can put hairs on end and make hearts accelerate, the sleek hair and skinny jeans crowd wasn’t one for pushing, dancing, screaming or reaching for the beautiful singer that is Aaron Gillespie, lead singer of The Almost. Although the band belted out the most woeful set of the night and left their hearts on stage, the crowd of silly fan girls and shy boys wasn’t one for giving much back. Instead the most action took place when Gillespie’s eyes bulged out and he screamed, “This girl is trying to steal my setlist!” Gillespie ripped the sticky set list from the floor, and with his sketchy smirk said, “Here you go, merry Christmas….”
Aaron and the boys rocked out like I haven’t seen a pop rock band do…ever. Their spectrum of emotion is so vast that they went from their regretful yet edgy “Say This Sooner,” to a new ballad to God that made tears leak from the eyes of a very drunk blonde as Gillespie said, “I’ve been paranoid all my life…and I’m thankful everyday for my wife, my mom…anything I love.” He screamed, screeched, hummed and sweetly sang his way to the end when he walked off stage only to return after chants of “one more song” emanating from the now-hyped audience.
Aaron Gillespie made every heart flutter when he closed with his famous “Amazing Because It Is,” his second soulful ballad of the night and the push this audience needed to feel like an crowd worthy of gracing The Almost with a chorus of “Amazing grace / how sweet the sound / that saved a wretch like me.” He procured emotion and energy rare to the group assembled at the Culture Room on that Thursday night, which proves the enigma and soul of his pretty voice.
The Dares, Anarbor, This Providence and The Almost graced us with performances full of rhythmic guitar solos and drum crazes worthy of grinding, jumping, swaying and exhausting our very liveliness, of leaving blood, sweat and tears on that floor. But I guess kids are taking the beautiful portrayal of live music for granted nowadays because it was difficult for these rock hotties to get a rise out of these youngsters.
Review by: Diana Poussin
Photos by: Ashleigh Ahern
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