Photos By: Francesca Tirpak
By: Tyler McQuillan
This past Monday, the House of Blues played host to an indie show that was nothing short of awesome. Colony House, playing with Sir Sly and Kongos, put on a show that kept teenagers, their begrudging chaperones, and worn out nine-to-fiver’s alike up past their bed times and grooving out.
Having had the chance to interview Caleb Chapman–Colony House’s front man and lead singer–the Wednesday before, I was particularly excited to the band play their stuff live.
Much of my anticipation stemmed from uncertainty over what to expect of the band’s live performance. Colony House’s music, embodying a stripped-down, instrumental approach to the indie genre, is incredibly diverse. The band’s songs are comparable to everything from Coldplay to the Arctic Monkeys. Their performance, including hits such as Silhouettes and 2:20, left no doubt in my mind though: these guys can rock. It’s a special thing when a band’s sound live is comparable with their sound recorded. It’s a really special thing when their live sound exceeds their recorded sound. Colony House’s performance exemplified this principle.
The band’s live sound is a beautiful combination of guitars turned up to 11 and powerful percussion juxtaposed against delicate yet impassioned vocals. This allowed even their softer songs to embody an ebullience one could not expect after only hearing them recorded. It was very clear these guys have a true passion for music, and altogether the performance created a tangible energy which truly brought their music to life. It was almost as if the crowd were hearing their songs for the first time again. If you haven’t been fortunate enough to hear Colony House’s music yet, do yourself a favor and check them out quickly. Then do yourself another and catch them live next time they’re back in SD. These guys are definitely a must-see.
But as if I were in a Billy Mays commercial, there was more in store after Colony House ended. Sir Sly followed up shortly after. Having seen these guys a couple years ago, it was a pleasure seeing against before a crowd that was both more voluminous and more familiar with their music. The band treated the crowd to their unique, somberly vibrant sound and demonstrated their live performance has come just as far as their music has. Landon Jacobs and company played with an energy that kept even the staunchest of the crowd’s chaperoning dads nodding and bopping along.
Kongos followed up, and the South African troupe displayed their sundry collection of songs. It’s hard not to enjoy a group featuring an accordion, especially when they can hit you grungey blues, spacey acoustics, and a bit of everything between. The group also dropped their backdrop banner and, akin to Tycho, offered up nature-laden visuals that made listening to their music that much more of an experience. It was easy to realize you weren’t at a Tycho show though, because the band’s hard-hitting sound kept the crowd jumping through the end of the show. The House of Blues definitely made it an expectedly lively Monday night.