Wednesday, March 2, 2011

26 Feb 11

"...I'm not thirsty anymore..."
Roger (of Bambi Raptor) after getting Iced by Brian Bender (of The Branded)

Hey, blogspot readers, ready for more exciting music and fun at Elbo Room? There were raptors rockin' the stage in Polo shirts ...hip-shaking guitar rock ...ambient country rock from the South and Branded bombs to be had. BAM! The Who's Who of the local scene (i.e. Ryan Powers, Sutured Psyche, Lucid Ground, etc) came out to support the bands featured - Bambi Raptor, Supersixty, The Black Saints, Damon Moon and the Whispering Drifts and The Branded with the lovely Rachel Katzman opening. A couple of SouthSide shoutouts to her resident "stalkers" Ryan and Bill of Sutured Psyche ...and check out their March 12 show at Red Line Tap! Meanwhile upstairs, good friends Elven Dollar Life were rockin' the acoustic lounge with a very special Eleven Dollar unplugged show.

Their Conception may been difficult but somehow this band managed to reach the Adolescence stage of life without a fight. Sporting matching polo shirts (except for Doug who opted for the cute red-white-blue Rocky shorts), Bambi Raptor kicked off their CD release show with a carnie-type intro to put the crowd in the "mood" before rockin' their brains with Griffin (the angriest song off Bambi's first album, Conception). However, blogspot readers, this little Bambi Raptor is growing up now and it's gradually leaving that temper tantrum stage for something more adult musically and vocally. Oh there were still moments when that fierce temper (provided by Kenneth on bass) appeared yet it was more subdued allowing the band to expand towards calmer songs ...thus allowing them to have fun while performing on stage. And the guys of Bambi Raptor were having plenty of fun during one of their best performances seen so far. After getting Iced by Brian Bender (of The Branded), Bambi rocked the crowd with I'm Not Listening (track 1 off Adolescence) which featured some keyboard effects mixed with band's fantastical guitar sound and percussions. The one thing blogspot readers will notice about this song (as well as the others of this new 6-song album) how rather "calm" Bambi Raptor can be. Yes, it was quite alarming not to hear the emotional screamo angst over the microphone but SouthSide enjoyed seeing the maturity presenting itself. Roger (front man of Bambi Raptor) still projected some anger while singing "...I'm not listening..." yet it's the music that actually picks up on his feelings venting "angrily" for him. Meanwhile during Heartbeat (track 2), the screamo angst did return to project a heart left broken despite Roger singing he's okay when he's really not. Performing other songs off the new album such as Away We Go, track 3 (the fun side to Bambi's adolescent stage) and Dreams, track 4 (bubbles ...bubbles everywhere creating that right atmosphere and mood) as well as fan favorite, Cosplay, track 6 (the teenage sexual fantasy side of Bambi), the band debut new song, Alchemy (will be on upcoming 3rd album) in which SouthSide enjoyed the most of all Bambi songs. This particular song clearly demonstrated Bambi's gradual rise not only in maturity but also finally finding its niche within the rock genre ...they can actually perform a "normal" song, blogspot readers. This reviewer cannot wait to see what the future has in store for Bambi Raptor as this local band progresses onward through its stages of life. SouthSide highly recommends visiting for more details about this band. Also she wants to thank to the band for their "thank you" mentioned inside the new CD cover.

In between Bambi Raptor's and The Branded's performances, SouthSide checked out the other bands featured within the middle of the lineup. She enjoyed the gritty guitar rock sound and deep falsetto vocals of Supersixty. This band's front man, Tim, truly put the sexy back into the rock scene by having this reviewer's heart aflutter with his poetic style on the lyrics generated a lot of excitement between band and fans. She highly recommends listening to the psychedelic-driven sound of Spacey (he ripped through the words with such fervor and determination while making you feel what he's saying not just hearing the words) and the soulful melody of Body (the melodic rhythm highlights the passion found within the words as he vividly describes the essence of a woman's body ...very sultry though retaining that hardcore gritty rock sound. Visit Supersixty at or on Facebook for more details. Meanwhile, SouthSide really got her rock groove literally lit on fire by the hip-shaking, electrifying 80's guitar rock sound of The Black Saints (WI). And yes, just as their poster stated, blogspot readers, this show indeed had hot, dirty rock n roll. There's plenty of dirtiness to be felt (as well as heard) off the guitars in which SouthSide caught Ryan (of Sutured Psyche) rockin' along with the band throughout this set. Wither, ladies, this front man, Drew, had a whole of sex appeal and vocals to make you an instant Saints groupie by the mere twist of those hips. Even his sexy powress and charismatic stage showmanship could have the charmed the purest of all virgins out her lacy underwear during this show especially during songs Cocked and Loaded (falsettos that amazed while being blinded by fast, furious guitar riffs and epic instrumentals) and Screwin' (a revival of a Van Halan-esque Hot For the Teacher but with more kick arse guitars and sex appeal). She does recommend checking out the "softer" side to The Saints heard in the ballad, Tomorrow. The Black Saints will be rockin' again this weekened in West Chicago Friday and in Milwaukee (with The Branded) Saturday. Visit or "Like" them on Facebook for more details. Then it was time for some country rock of a different kind which combined the elements and essence of a Pink Floyd-esque vibe. That's the best way SouthSide can sum up the performance by Damon Moon and the Whispering Drifts (GA) without giving too much away if you have never seen this band perform live. This reviewer immediately found herself knee deep within this band's blend of rock, country and ambient sound thus liking the dark melodic tone Damon's music projected itself. She also liked how this profound yet haunting vibe perfectly highlighted Damon's vocals in which vividly brought the words inside the lyrics to life. There's something strangely unique, blogspot readers, when a band like Damon Moon not only creates an atmosphere but also set the mood as well as tone of its show even though not inadvertedly doing so. The thundering riffs and epically melodic instrumentals had certainly mesmerized this reviewer under its cloud of mystery. Currently on tour with appearances at this year's SXSW in Austin, TX, SouthSide highly recommends checking out this unique, one of a kind country/rock band, blogspot readers. Visit for more details.

Preparing to embark on their first tour (with appearances in New Orleans and SXSW) since forming nearly a year ago, this band rocked out the lineup with another exciting performance. After the Boondock Saints intro on the television screens, the church of The Branded had commenced by performing the rip-roaring song, Jesus Christ. Blogspot readers will immediately notice that this rising local band combines the art and excitement of music with visual imagining (in which the random video/images run perfectly in sync with The Branded's set liet. Each scene/image shown on screen played a significant role to their songs central theme (i.e. Too Kool had random images of famous douchebags including cast members of the Jersey Shore). These talented musicicans pride themselves in giving their fans and audience one heck of an explosive rock show each time they hit the stage ...espeically with Dimitri (on sound) and Pep (on lights). And tonight was no exception. The Branded proved themselves worthy as a headlining act in which the late night audience felt the furious fire of hardcore guitar rock and Brian's (front man) vocal power (with some screamo). This reviewer enjoyed how this band keeps constantly improving its performances by adding something a little extra that wasn't there before. For example, compared to their last show reviewed back in Novemeber, this performance featured more umph in the guitar rock sound as well as Brian vulnerably exposing more of himself on vocals thus bringing out more emotional angst off the lyrics. Check out The Branded's balled, Let Me In, though taking the energy and tempo down a notch, Brian was allowed to make the audience feel the same pain he was feeling within the song even with a bit of his famous gut-wrenching screamo for sound effect. Also the same could be said during Running Away in which Brian really conveyed that essence of being frustrated and in pain within his voice. Performing other songs like Vanity and First Move, the highlight of the night was when The Branded closed with Let's Get Down in explosive rock action until being surprised by Roger (of Bambi Raptor) with Smirnoff Ice. Visit or for more details for this band's upcoming tour dates and appearances.

Until next time, support your local scene,

1 comment:

  1. Southside,

    I still think that a band with the name Bambi Raptor has got to be seen live. Next time I find out where they're playing, I'll try to make their show.



Thank you for your feedback - SouthSide