Monday, January 28, 2013

Dark Side of the Moon

Dark Side of the Moon. Concert.
The Kent Stage, Kent, Ohio January 25, 2013.
Dark Side of the Moon: or

Dark Side of the Moon (DSOTM), not to be confused with Acoustic Side of the Moon or the full band Wish You Were Here, is composed of members from around Northeast Ohio, centering in the Akron/Summit county area.  They bring not just the music of Pink Floyd, but a full Pink Floyd experience which those of us too young to have seen Pink Floyd in person very much appreciate.  A full DSOTM show includes music, light show, smoke machine, audience participation, and visual artists working on Pink Floyd-themed artwork.  The visual artists were a special treat, and the subject of plenty of attention, as their original works were obviously their own creations, inspired by and drawing from the sounds of the night.  One piece was sold immediately after the show, and the other had been commissioned by his wife as a gift for the saxophonist, Steve Pickerel.  This particular night was cold and snowy, but that did not deter the many current fans of DSOTM from making their way to the Kent Stage for a three-hour sensual experience, and the band members did anything but disappoint those braving the weather.  

Friday night’s music drew from all portions of the Pink Floyd discography, including both rock icons like “Dark Side of the Moon” and more obscure pieces such as “Great Gig in the Sky.”  There was no opener on Friday, allowing more time for DSOTM, but those of us arriving early did get to hear the tail end of practice for the band while waiting in the Kent Stage lobby.  The audience consisted of all ages, from young kids to the lead vocalist’s grandmothers, aged 82 and 90 years.  In my opinion, this span speaks volumes to both the timelessness of the music and the ability of the band.  

The first set included some lesser known and more instrumental pieces.  There were some sampled/pre-recorded selections, but in music as iconic as Pink Floyd this seemed less a distraction, and added little reminders of where various selections came from (who could imagine “Breathe” without the intro sounds of slot machines, laughing, etc.?).  The music was technically solid, and definitely worthy of the label “Pink Floyd tribute band”.  I really appreciated the improvisational ability of the group, as well, since Pink Floyd was known for having exceptional talent in this arena, although most covers are note-for-note copies of the music.  At the critical saxophone solo in “Us and Them,” Pickerel actually came off of stage and popped up in the middle of the seating to play while standing on the seats.  

After a brief intermission, DSOTM resumed playing for another extended set, this time with more standard fare like “Money” and selections from The Wall.  This set was heavy on the smoke machine, obscuring the band and artists, and distinctly altering the tonal qualities of the music; more reverberation, distortion, and echo all were obvious, and added an almost surreal quality to the show.  By the second set, there were more calls for audience participation, call-and-response games, and beat-clapping.  There was also more dancing in the aisles and random whoops and hollers, but I feel safe that was more due to visits to the bar over intermission than the band’s encouragement.  At the end of the set, the band finally introduced themselves, and announced that it was the eve of keyboarder Ray Beeble’s birthday.  The encore was much appreciated and obviously not a standard set, as shown by the bits of chatter and random playing done in between pieces.  It easily would have gone on all night, if the audience had had their wish.  All in all, the show was quite an experience, and really a feat of strength with as much passion as DSOTM put into those three hours.  Check out their website, and if you can, go see Dark Side of the Moon soon.

Personnel: Dan Wasson (bass guitar), Daniel Kshywonis (drums), Jeff Tucker (guitar, vocals), Ray Beeble (keyboards, synthesizer, vocals), Steve Pickerel (saxophones, guitars, percussion),
Trevor Mallernee (vocals), Alexa Pokorny (vocals), Justin Roberts (painter), Kat Francis (painter)

Set list: Set 1- In the Flesh?, Speak to Me, Breathe, Time, What Do You Want From Me, Mother, Run Like Hell, Us and Them, Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun, Dogs of War, Eclipse
Set 2- Shine on You Crazy Diamond, Learning to Fly, On the Turning Away, Have a Cigar, Coming Back to Life, No Regret, Great Gig in the Sky, Money, Hey You, Young Lust, Brick in the Wall (parts 1 and 2)

Encore- Astronomy Domine, Wish You Were Here, Comfortably Numb

Lisa Regula Meyer

No comments:

Post a Comment