Superdrag - Paradise Boston 4/11/2009
Paradise, Boston MA
Saturday, April 11, 2009
*I wrote this for melophobe, but its not posted still..so I don't know whats up...
Back in 1996 Superdrag burst on to the scene with a college radio and MTV buzz worthy track "Sucked Out". The Knoxville Tennessee based band would work tirelessly to get their music to the masses but after three tries on Elektra records the band was dropped and guitarist Brandon Fisher and bassist Tom Pappas had left the group, leaving singer guitarist John Davis and drummer Don Coffey Jr holding Superdrag together. Even with all that, the band decided to take a hiatus after a blowout show at the Paradise in Boston. In 2007, Pappas and Fisher rejoined the band for a "reunion" tour. The guys had so much fun they worked once more to bring a new record of material "Industry Giants" which was released in late March 2009.
In the shadow of Boston University the streets were filled with revelers after the hockey team had won the NCAA final four, and the passion and heat from the street was brought into the club.
Taking the stage shortly before 11 the band kept it stripped down. The four guys with just a "Superdrag" banner suspended behind them. Singer John Davis took the microphone, said hello and told us we'd be part of a live album. The audience erupted as the band launched in to "Slow to Anger" the lead off single from the new record.
For the next ninety minutes the band would cover material from each of their records, dipping deep in to their catalog, but not alienating the fans that might know the "singles".
Pappas works the stage like a madman, with animated rock poses and head bobs. Fisher, who seems like the shy guy in study hall, would toss in some great guitar fills as Davis would hold the lead vocal duties. All the while, the bearded Don Coffey Jr would hold a steady, yet hard back beat to all of the beautiful noise on stage.
Another stand out from the latest record was "Ready to Go" where Fisher took the lead vocals and would repeat "hey hey ready to go" and Pappas and Davis would respond with the same lines and the song evolved in to what makes Superdrag such a terrific band, the overall sound. You are drawn in with the poppy lyrics, the punchy bass lines, it is all part of the package.
Davis asked us if we wanted to be heard on the record and based off our "noise" we'd given consent to appear on the record and we were all asked to sing "Sucked Out". The band would hardly slow down for the final few songs of the main set. Nary taking a break, and even tuning guitars mid song to keep things going. The main set ended with "Destination Ursa Major" and the band left to an enthusiastic applause.
A few moments later drummer Don Coffey appeared alone on stage. He expressed his sincere thanks to the fans, and "band families" in the Boston area for years of support. He then asked if it was past midnight (it was) so he said "It's John Davis' birthday today..so lets sing him happy birthday to get him back out here". Of course the audience obliged and the very humbled and gracious Davis appeared on stage. There were two cupcakes with candles in them that Davis blew out and enjoyed a few bites of as the band tuned up for the encore.
Davis, thanked us again said "Happy Easter" and they began "True Believer". They'd continue at a torrid pace and wrap things up with the live show closer "Rocket" extending out the jam at the end of the track leaving everyone hot, sweaty and elated.
In another classy move the band has done the last two times, they hurry off the stage and rush to the merchandise table. There they sign, pose and chat with fans. The band which may have had issues with everything from labels, to each other at times, put that all aside and make the fans even more aware of how happy they are that someone enjoys what they do.
Labels: live review