....that song's about a crazy, crazy [woman]....
It's well documented that SouthSide has an eclectic ear and taste for music. From country/western to pop/rock and everything else in between, this reviewer enjoys a variety of what the local scene has to offer on any given night. Recently, she had the opportunity of listening to variations of rock alternative music at the Elbo Room. The lineup featured a band named Empire Drift and this was their last performance before taking a hiatus from the stage.
Honestly, SouthSide did enjoy Empire's set of straight rock alternative music. It had a vibrant guitar sound which wasn't too flashy or trying to impress with long introductions and instrumentals. It was quite simplistic ...easy to listen and enjoyable. At times, their songs could be raw and gritty like hot Southern rock or there would be an edgier tone in the tempo. There was a moment during the song, Ten Years From Now, when Empire's music was too serious for this reviewer. This band did bring a lot of energy to the stage however something was missing to really liven up the audience.
SouthSide noticed at the beginning of their set how very little Empire Drift interacted with its fans. It appeared they were rushing between songs until the middle of the performance did they begin to acknowledge the audience. They were also another problem as well. For a Friday night crowd, many weren't feeling the momentous vibe even after covering Sweet's Ballroom Blitz. SouthSide doesn't know if it was the lack of excitement in the vocals or what but this poorly done cover couldn't hold onto the vibe which came to a screeching halt. In SouthSide's opinion, they were either laidback or uninterested during certain songs for example, Ten Years From Now. Placing a serious song after a rousing punk classic was a mistake. SouthSide also didn't enjoy Empire's attempt at psychedelic rock during their cover of Pink Floyd's Time especially when the lead flubbed on the ending lyrics.
It's not to say Empire Drift had a bad performance at the Elbo Room but as the night's headliner, SouthSide expected something better than mediocre. She does suggest not weighing down energetic rock alternative music with a serious song that you lose your momentum and audience in one heartbeat. Also don't leave your audience in the dark - make them feel welcome to your show. Please try to remember this is one reviewer's opinion and she recommends giving Empire Drift a listen.
Until next time, readers, support your local scene,