Wednesday, March 19, 2014

12 Mar 14

It was a swansong of a performance, blogspot readers...

Tonight, SouthSide’s out and about within the Roscoe neighborhood rockin’ Beat Kitchen for one last ride with her longtime friend, Mr. Russia. She has reviewed this local band since its humble beginnings at the former Ronny’s to Metro and many Double Door appearance. So it was fitting for her to be there to bid a fond farewell to Ryan, Ivan and Rob of Mr. Russia. Coincidentally, it was also Ryan’s last performance before leaving Chicago for the bright lights of L.A. Supporting this band’s swansong show was touring Ohio bands Graves and History’s History with local band Fitness opening.

Though performing in front of a sparse Chicago audience, blogspot readers, both Ohio bands, Graves ( and History’s History ( rocked the Beat Kitchen stage under two unique sounds of rock music. However, it was Graves’ set that left this reviewer confused. She had a difficult time comprehending the strange lead guitarist Matt’s vocals-music combination. Neither one complemented each other throughout the set since it sounded as if he was actually screaming the lyrics into the mic instead of singing. At times SouthSide wondered if he was going for a screamo vocal style despite his voice was straining hard. Also, this reviewer was confused by Graves’ core rock sound. It was a cross between hardcore and melodic guitar rock. in all honesty, blogspot readers, SouthSide tried “feeling” this touring band but couldn’t. There could have been more audience-band interaction such as mentioning song titles before or after a couple of songs especially the new ones performed.

History’s History had a bit more tolerable performance even though it wasn’t this reviewer’s type of rock music featuring hardcore yet melodic sound. This band had the energy to rock out this fairly sizable audience but sadly, blogspot readers, she wasn’t truly feeling what their Ohio fans were feeling throughout the set. There were moments which left her scratching her head especially when History’s History would zip into a fast chord change between hardcore and melodic without allowing the ears to gradually adjust to the switch. And despite being big on instrumental floetry within song bridges, SouthSide still felt something was missing or lacking that could have her “feeling” the band more. In the end, it was a short performance due to the front man’s have minor vocal problems (his voice was straining) ...having guest vocalist on History’s songs didn’t help either.

It was a trip down memory lane during Mr. Russia’s swansong performance at Beat Kitchen, blogspot readers. Fans crowded the back room to hear classic songs like “Pretty Girls” (in which they merched panties), “Damage” and more that featured the gritty double bass punk rock sound. Yet it wasn’t all punk with this band. They did try their hand with a little disco as heard from the song “I Explode” which had many (including this reviewer) dancing to the rhythmic beat. It’s what Mr. Russia did best during their time in the local scene – they exploded. “...If we play it [It’s True], maybe Summer will come ...what a girl named Summer?” before Ryan took lead vocals during the song “Temper”. And for not playing together in a couple of years, the band rocked extra hard and sounded great. Still, blogspot readers, it was saddening to see Mr. Russia perform its final live show as the band ended with its first song, “Boys” after wishing Ryan well. A sentimental end (since Ivan Russia doesn’t like getting emotional) but not to worry ...he did promise another exciting band to come in the near future. This reviewer would like to salute Mr. Russia for the many fond music memories wishing each member luck in their future endeavors...
Until next time, support your local scene,

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