July 12, 2008

Port O’Brien @ Café Du Nord

It was indie folk rock night at Café Du Nord last night and the building was a shakin’. It wasn’t so long ago that I wrote this album review in anticipation for this show. Port O’Brien’s live performance was touted as a must see, and I must say, the entire show exceeded the hype. Port O’Brien played in front of friends & family with high energy and enthusiasm as expected, and plenty of team vocals and crowd participation. They certainly do put on an entertaining live show, but with lead sing Van Pierszalowski nearly out of voice, I imagine they could go bigger.

The Builders and The Butchers of Portland were surprisingly awesome… surprisingly, because I knew nothing about them or their music until earlier this week. All night I couldn’t think of whom they reminded me of, and then this morning it hit me—The Decemberists! I then proceeded to find out, via other reviews, that I am not the first to draw this comparison. They folk rocked it up something serious with an abundance of yelling, drum pounding (they have two “percussionists”—see picture—who hammer away on everything within reach, including washboards), mandolin & banjo plucking, and one of the most distinctive lead singer voices I’ve ever heard. This was my first encounter with The Builders and The Butchers, and it certainly won’t be my last. I highly recommend checking them out. Note: The red lighting made good concert photos virtually impossible.

The Old-Fashioned Way had a lead singer with a deep baritone that was similar to Matt Barninger of The National. I remember enjoying their set, but after The Builders and The Butchers rambunctiously impressive set I can’t remember other specifics. I’ll have to check ‘em out again.


awmercy said...

Man, I wish I could have been there. I'm loving the Builders and the Butchers album. I can only imagine that they sound better live.

Nightrain said...

Well, I'm sure you will have an opportunity to see them plenty once you make your move... they are certainly worth seeing, maybe even a few times.

Glad you're enjoying the album.