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nateburrell's Photo I'm an avid fan of life, live music and side walk street talk. I appreciate imperfections in people and art.

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Concert photos: Rum Drum Ramblers and Whistle Pigs at Off Broadway, Thursday, February 24

Seeing the Rum Drum Ramblers is always a good time — no question, but an album release show in front of a packed house at Off Broadway…well, you don’t get to see that very often. Just awesome.

Bikers, punks, hipsters and bridesmaids were all getting down to some good ol’ fingerpickin’ punk blues. With Mat Wilson providing the foundation with his dirty guitar sound and style, he and his band played a set filled with numbers from their new album Mean Scene. Stompin’. Howlin’. Hootin’-and-a-hollerin’. They stirred up a whiskey-soaked crowd for an hour plus, and were joined on stage by members of the Funky Butt Brass Band and Pokey LaFarge at different points of the show. It was rowdy. It was wild. And it was a fine show to start off a month-or-so-long tour in support of the album.

Opening the night were the Whistle Pigs, a 3-piece from Carbondale, Ill. With a hint of Appalachia sounds and as much energy as a backwoods barbeque, these dudes picked out some fine music. Standing 3 across — with an upright bass, a banjo and an accordion, they played an energetic and relentless mix of originals and old songs. They showed no issue with having fun on stage: laughing and singing and playing with a fair amount of boozin’ in between, yet always maintaing a very on-point delivery. This is a band I’ll be going to see again.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: Old 97′s and Those Darlins at the Pageant, Friday, February 18

Last night the Pageant hosted a thrilling evening of good, ol’ fashioned alternative country and rock & roll. Headliners Old 97′s played an extended set to a crowded room full of loyal fans.  

Frontman Rhett Miller stood center stage and belted out song after song of heartfelt lyrics, only taking a break to wail and flail around as he strummed on his 6 string. Miller and his band’s professionalism on stage, along with their well-crafted tunes, make it easy to understand why these veterans fill venues across the country.

Opening was Nashville-based, 4-piece band Those Darlins. With Jessi, Nikki and Kelley Darlin took charge of the guitar and bass duties, while drummer Linwood Regensburg held it down on the kit. The group played a set that consisted largely of numbers from its upcoming sophomore release, Screws Get Loose. Known for wild, unpredictable shows, Those Darlins kept themselves in order and let their new batch of songs do the rebel rousin’. Look for an album release sometime in March.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: Interpol and School of Seven Bells at the Pageant, Friday, February 11

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: Patrick Sweany at Off Broadway, Thursday, February 10

Nashville rhythm and soul man, Patrick Sweany brought his style of rock & roll to Off Broadway last night. Touring in support of his just-released album That Old Southern Drag, Sweany and his band plugged in, turned it up and let loose. With a tight set consisting of foot-stomping tunes, Sweany unleashed his signature sound for the appreciative crowd. With an on-point rhythm section holding it down, the frontman was able to work the stage with a commanding guitar performance accompanied by an equally commanding range of vocals. Playing over an hour’s worth of original numbers from his 5 album catalogue, Sweany heated the cold evening in south city.

Opening the evening was St Louis indie folk duo Cassie Morgan and the Lonely Pine, who held the room at a standstill with a beautiful blend of harmonies, precise guitar work and an array of accompanying instruments. St Louis rockers Benjamin Riley Band rounded out the evening, playing an energized set that was highlighted by Riley’s unfiltered soulful vocals. From beginning to end, it was a terrific night of live music.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: JJ Grey & Mofro and Ponderosa at the Pageant, Saturday, February 5

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: Ben Folds at the Pageant, Sunday, January 30

Running on to the Pageant‘s stage, recklessly doing laps around the piano and various other instruments, Ben Folds had the crowd and his band jumping (literally) before he even played his first note.

After a lively first minute of welcoming the crowd with waves, poses and other animated hop-skips, Ben sat down at the Baldwin and hammered on the keys with the kind of class and taste that just makes you shake your head in appreciation. But the way he subtly built the energy and intensity of his songs was absolutely impressive. You could tell he was thrilled to be playing to the sold-out room — he was having fun, enjoying the excited energy flowing from the stage to the crowd and back, and it showed each time he did his finger dance across the ivory. Just an awesome performer. The packed house down on Delmar let him know with a booming applause after each song that he and his band are always welcome to come back to St Louis and run and jump around wildly on stage.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: Okee Dokee Brothers at Off Broadway, Sunday, January 23

I’ve seen quite a number of live shows in St. Louis, but Sunday’s set by the Okee Dokee Brothers at the KDHX-sponsored Musical Merry-Go-Round matinee sure was a first. Never in my life have I seen the standing area/dance floor at Off Broadway so wound up and unpredictable, but that could be due to the fact that I have never been in a music club full of 3, 4, 5 and 6-year-old children who were absolutely letting loose. It was a wild Sunday afternoon. Kids and adults got down to bluegrass children’s tunes, everyone seemed to be participating in call-and-response sing-alongs with the band and a laughing good time was had by many.

These family matinee shows seem like a fine way for music-loving families to spend an hour or so to end the weekend. And if you go to the next show, I hope that you get to see the robot dance moves some of these kids were doing — just awesome.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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Concert photos: STL Loud Showcase with Langen Neubacher, Andy Berkhout, the Warbuckles, the Orbz, the Dive Poets and Via Dove at Off Broadway, Friday, January 14

The STL Loud showcase at Off Broadway on Friday night brought 6 bands and songwriters together to give the crowded room an evening filled with a variety of sounds from some of our local talent.

Beginning the evening with a bit more of a mellow vibe, Langen Neubacher played an intimate set of moody folk music, followed by Andy Berkhout, who also displayed his fine song craft laced with harmonies. Both Neubacher and Berkhout were accompanied by a supporting musician, which helped add a layer to the sound, but it was clear that each of them were the backbone of their respective sets.

The Warbuckles changed directions with their upbeat get down sound, and the audience followed suit, as evidenced by the dancing concert-goers in the front of the stage. The Orbz were next and held the amplified energy, yet added a bit of intensity to the room with their rockin’ style; they put it in the red and let loose from the beginning to the end of their set.

The night’s highlight had to be the Dive Poets, whose brand of rock & roll seems to bounce of the walls, underneath your feet and then smacks you on the back until you’re pushed to the stage. The crowd sang and danced, and the entire joint was having a good time.

Via Dove rounded out the night with a highly energetic set. Never a dull moment when these fellas take the stage. They turned it up, rocked out and topped off an excellent event featuring local St Louis music.

All photos by Nate Burrell. See more at my Flickr stream.

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