The show on 10/23 started out with Doctopus, a pretty kick ass garage rock band. Not only did the band sound great, but lead singer/bass player, Stephen Bellair, proved to be quite the hilarious frontman. Donning a Michael Jordan jersey, he confessed to the crowd that he wanted to talk about sports but was apprehensive since he knew we were all there for music…not a sports chat. He must not have realized that Chicagoans are obsessive when it comes to sports and would have gladly heard him out. As Bellair said… “they’re not mutually exclusive!” Doctopus played a rockin’ set and was joined onstage for a song by Nick Allbrook who had been watching his friends from the crowd. Armed with nothing but a tambourine, Nick gave it his all and he and Bellair had quite the special moment on stage (see below). At the end of their set, Doctopus encouraged the crowd to go buy one of their t-shirts. Money and pot were the only acceptable forms of currency with the latter actually being preferred as it “cut out the middle man.” Click here for some free downloads from the band’s Bandcamp.
On to Pond. Man, was I blown away by this band! Having never seen them live before, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. At the beginning of the show, Nick Allbrook woefully told everyone that his voice was completely spent and that he was sorry he wouldn’t be able to give it his all. Through the magic of a supportive Chicago crowd and encouragement from his bandmates, he was able to deliver an amazing performance. It really makes me wonder what it would have sounded like had his voice been in tip top shape. I don’t think my brain would have been able to handle it. The entire band is made up of incredibly talented musicians who effortlessly switch between instruments. For example, when playing with Tame Impala, Nick used to play bass, Julien drums, and Jay drums, synth, or guitar. With Pond, Nick plays guitar, Julien plays bass, and Jay is on the drums. Shiny Joe Ryan, on guitar, was wearing a delicious fur coat no one other than himself could pull off. I’m also fairly certain that keyboardist Jamie Terry is the happiest man alive. Seriously though, his love for their music just seemed to radiate out of him. The show was amazing, the band was phenomenal, and everyone was engulfed in quite the loving atmosphere. I will definitely be seeing them again next time they are in town!
Photos and review by Abby Walter
More pictures here.
1. Stephen Bellair using a beer can as a slide.
2. This semi-erotic encounter between Bellair and Allbrook.
3. When Jay said he “had a really good hot dog at uh….. Wiener Circle!”
4. Shiny Joe Ryan enjoying the little orange Frisbees being thrown on stage.
5. This random stretch break? And the other time he just kind of hung out mid song.
6. This bromantic moment between Jamie and Joe.
7. This in general.
8. Nick being Nick.