Words by: Martin Halo
The Parlor Mob :: 06.21.08 :: The Stone Pony :: Asbury Park, NJ
The Stone Pony is getting a new lease on life with Live Nation signing on to book the historic Asbury Park rock club. Even with national acts now consistently coming through the doors, including The Avett Brothers and Robert Cray, it is the artists that live right around the corner that have made it their home in its darkest hour.
For The Parlor Mob the return trip home marks the first time back to the Pony's stage since August of 2007; one week before the band left to bury themselves in Echo Mountain Studios for a recording session with acclaimed producer Jacquire King (Modest Mouse, Tom Waits). A lot has changed since then. For the band, national supporting tour legs with Nicole Atkins and Earl Greyhound have added some hair to the chests of the young lads as they face the most difficult, turbulent years of their short lives.
The band consists of Paul Ritchie (guitars), Mark Melicia (vox), Dave Rosen (guitars), Sam Bey (drums) and Nick Villapiano (bass). All business deals with Roadrunner Records have been signed, the album, And You Were A Crow, has been released, now all that's left to do is the daily grind of about 400 miles and the nightly conversion of new fans. With the entire industry enduring the decline of record sales, there is only one way to earn glory: on the road.
Emerging from the darkness with the illumination of flashbulbs, it was Ritchie and his crunching rhythm lines to "Real Hard Headed" that woke the beast from its slumber. The fury is unyielding through "Kids" and "Dead Wrong." It is a punch to the gut, as the character of the young ensemble bleeds through. They look dirty and poor. They aren't exactly the reckless mustache-riding outlaws they were a year ago. Reality has set in and smothered fantasy. The scars they now bare come from desolate highways, blinding snow and overzealous state troopers.
Ragged and tattered, The Parlor Mob convincingly polished off their 75 minute set with the tension-filled blues epic "Tide of Tears" and the explosive "Carnival of Crows." Standing directly in front of Melicia's howling vocals and Rosen's screaming lead licks was Bey's drum work, no more evident than on "Bullet." The set was capped with "Hard Times" and "Everything You're Breathing For." They wrapped with the country boogie encore of "Can't Keep No Good Boy Down," and while the Jersey audience was tame and stiff in comparison to the previous night's sold-out NYC crowd, The Parlor Mob seemed braced for the American and Canadian tour legs in the upcoming months as well as appearances at the Download Festival in Northern California on July 19 and Lollapalooza on August 1. No recording can convey the nature and potential of this band with any justice, you must see them live to experience the real truth of this young group.
DMW News Presents: Tour of the Gear with The Parlor Mob
Check out JamBase's feature/interview with The Parlor Mob here.
JamBase | Asbury Park
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