Review: Conspirator, BoomBox, Abakus and Cinnamon Chasers in Boston
Conspirator’s show at the Paradise Rock Club on Saturday October 20 was packed, energetic and a good indicator of the progression the band has made together to develop their now distinct sound. Supporters BoomBox and Russ Davies put on equally fun sets.
Unfortunately I arrived a bit too late for the Abakus set but started off the night with BoomBox, which was delightful and gave the Paradise a sexy vibe I never thought could be found there. BoomBox are the mad hatters of bassy funk, their stage presence is very 70’s with top hats and feather boas to compliment their heady grooves. They made sure everyone had a great time, serenading us into the night with their awesome hybrid of funky, guitar jams, Bob Dylan reminiscent vocals and danceable beats. Mid-set, a group of friends burst into a cheer in the middle of the crowd, totally encapsulating the electric feeling that was present in the air.
Cinnamon Chasers came up next, and once again with Russ Davies I was surprised by the difference between what I anticipated I would see and hear, and what actually played out on stage. It seems that his studio recordings are no indication of what he can or will do live, and that’s an impressive quality in a producer. Cinnamon Chasers is Russ Davies’ “nu disco” project. Maybe the lighter melodies just don’t translate into a live setting but I felt like the “nu disco” feeling was lost in this set. Regardless, it was a fun time and he was definitely giving and feeding off the energy in the crowd, frequently making eye contact with people and making it a really fun, intimate performance.
Conspirator is true electronica-fused rock that packs a serious punch. The builds and climaxes of their songs drive crowds wild and the energy levels are always ridiculously happy and high. Leaving their shows you feel like you just left a good workout, on an endorphin high and totally energized. As much as the term “rager” is overused, it really describes the Conspirator live experience well. I made it a point to get as close to the stage as possible when they began playing so I could watch the interactions between them. In watching their faces, the amount of laughter and banter they share its obvious that these four guys are truly where they want to be. Their stage presences compliment each other perfectly and it seems like they are really letting go and baring themselves musically, really “feeling it.” After their second song Marc Brownstein greeted the packed house,
“Last night in Northampton we had an incredible time, genuinely, we had such an incredible time, but we’re going in tonight in Boston!…Massachusetts fans are the best!”
to which the crowd roared in response. Happily for me they entered into “Commercial Amen” next, giving in to my (and I’m sure many other older Conspirator fans) desire for songs off their 2005 album, The Key, and toning it down a bit. The rest of the night they barreled through their newer tracks, shaking the Paradise with loud heavy builds and making fans sweat and scream.
“So Much More”
“Feed the Wolf”
Encore: “Park Ave”