MOE | 11.25 | NYC

Before a rather mind opening experience I had a few months ago at the Roseland Ballroom I have to admit that moe. was not a band I was too excited to see again but, after, I wanted to give those guys another listen and see if it was just me. After this past Saturday, I can say that it most definitely was. And the guys have keys now, added about four shows before that gig which will probably be more of a fixture on tour as I was told by one of the band's technical crew who said that the guys are grooving on it. No doubt, it spreads them out more and nicely balances the beautifully raunchy rips that the front three provide.

Crammed on the floor for one of the last shows that Roseland will host it wasn't only the energy of the crowd that was palpable but the insane jams coming from Al Schnier, Rob Derhak and Churck Garvey; the strongest string unit I've ever seen. There's hard rock all over their work, patchworked nicely with more bluesy stuff which is strung together nicely with old fashioned rock n roll. If that was it, a pounding would be coming your way, but their bluegrass and country harmonies hold them from going into full Metallica or Van Halen mode. For those collectors out there, hunt yourself down a copy of their first set with killer works of art like Rebubula and a jam leading into and througout the closer, Recreational Chemistry, which is one of those performances that are so intense, so right on that it will leave you absolutely numb. Personally I was a bit pensive, considering how ironic it would be to dine out with these guys and see them order from the "lite" portion of a menu because all of the steakhouses in the land couldn't serve you up anything as meaty as moe. can.

Opening set two with St. Augustine, moe. ran the table more toward the pop scale with a lighter feel leading into Gone with country lines and a spacy aura of yearning brought out by the keyboardist who was also let out much more for the rest of the night. There was a jaunty pace in the first half of the set with some ballad type lyrics as in Hi & Lo which provided a dose of noodle with more rockabilly in it. Further on, the work of Vinnie Amico on drums and Jim Loughlin on a percussion set, which evokes the image and energy of Sheila E., continued to whip up the underbelly supporting the three front men whose power is undeniably reminiscent of football lineman who could conceivably move the Earth. In the middle of the closer, Meat, Vinnie & Jim had the spotlight for themselves for a bit which provided a nice sense of balance before they employed their new toy, rocking out a cover of the Allman Brother's classic, One Way Out which is sure to send you off hoppin' to the late night happening of your choice.

It's easy to understand why moe. is one of the most popular bands on the scene, acquiring a following like other growing acts like the String Cheese Incident and The Disco Biscuits and you'll have plenty of opportunity to dig on the ride. Thursday night, they can be found at the Vogue Theater in Indianapolis and then onward through the rest of tour which ends with two nights at D.C.'s 9:30 Club on December 8th and 9th. And don't forget one of the most anticipated NYE shows on the east coast; The Flyers Skate Zone in Atlantic City where I a lot of my own loved ones will be.

Howie Greenberg
JamBase NYC Correspondent
Kitty Malone Sat on a Mule

[Published on: 11/30/00]

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