Reviews > Shows
Brothers Past at The Tralf
Photo by Adam Childs
Brothers Past is a much more talented act than its exposure would indicate. In spite of the relative obscurity they have dwelled in since forming a decade ago, certainly in comparison to a bevy of less inspired jammers, the Philly quartet is a force to be reckoned with in the live setting. Celebrating drummer Rick Lowenberg’s birthday with a late-night Disco Biscuits after party, the band put its winning talents on display as the wee hours ticked away in Buffalo.
The Tralf, located on the second floor of a downtown mini-mall, is an odd venue in some ways but ultimately an ideal setting for this event. Once past the cadre of police officers who act as the security staff and up an escalator, the room itself is spacious and well ventilated. MNM Presents, the company that has breathed new life into the local music scene of late, has found a solid home base here.
Many fans who rushed over from The Town Ballroom were dismayed at missing the bulk of Archnemesis’ opening set, as the DJing duo were just about finished by the time everyone arrived. The Telepath side project still managed to get people dancing with slamming electro beats, and it’s a safe bet that this act will turn heads as it continues to develop.
Brothers Past opened up with a fantastic version of “Machine,” as Lowenberg’s relaxed breakbeat gave way to a harder jam built around the e-snare and Clay Parnell’s sinister synth bass line. Tom Hamilton developed a pleasant peak before the song’s conclusion, and the set was off and running. A re-worked version of “Dressed Up, Worn Down” popped up next, giving Hamilton another opportunity to show off his formidable chops. The ease with which the band finds musical cohesion was notable, each player judiciously rendering their roles. The seamless transition into the end of “Let’s Start A Gang” provided one of the finest moments of the set, as Hamilton’s razor sharp riff was met with notable applause.
While the start time of the show didn’t allow the band to truly stretch out, they made the most of their 90 minutes. Lowenberg continued to impress with unwavering percussive precision, and Tom McKee drove the band’s modern sound with his tasteful selection of keyboard patches. A rare stand-alone version of “The Ceiling” did not disappoint, closing the show at 4am with gusto and leaving the still-alert crowd wanting more.
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