Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Saturday, 17 December 2011 11:08

Concert review: Raul Malo rings in the holidays at the Duck Room, Thursday, December 15

Concert review: Raul Malo rings in the holidays at the Duck Room, Thursday, December 15 flickr.com/photos/thequeenshall/5170624004
Written by Matt Champion
Rate this item
(1 Vote)

In the process of wrapping up his current tour, Raul Malo brought good music, good cheer and even a few presents to a throng of fans in Blueberry Hill's Duck Room.

Hitting the stage at 9 p.m. to a packed Duck Room, Raul made sure to let us know that if we weren't in the Christmas spirit, we would be soon -- whether we liked it or not. After blasting through a quartet of holiday classics, including a surf rock-inspired "A Not So Merry Christmas" and a rendition of "Santa Claus Is Back" that was so steeped in the blues that I thought B.B. King was on stage; I was in the spirit even though Christmas music is low on my list of favorites.

Malo has the kind of voice that transcends genre. After seeing him switch from surf rock to delta blues to Italian standards in the span of a few hours, I'm convinced that he could sing from the Yellow Pages and still enthrall his audience. His voice is full and powerful with a rapid vibrato reminiscent of Roy Orbison. Malo's guitar skills are on par with his vocal talent. He spent the evening switching between a classical acoustic and a Gretsch hollow-body, shredding and picking his heart out with every song.

The backing band was fantastic, consisting of drummer John McTigue, bassist Elio Giordano, Michael Guerra on the accordion and Kullen Fuchs doubling up on keyboards and trumpet. Guerra and Fuchs in particular were standouts. Guerra played like a man possessed, coaxing sounds from his squeezebox that ran the gamut from crunchy electric guitar to Leslie-drenched Hammond organ. Fuchs' trumpeting was some of the best I've seen, his parts spaced out well enough that it didn't overpower the rest of the band. He was like the Ancient Master in an old Kung-Fu flick; you knew the second he did something it was going to be amazing, and it was every time.

Malo and his band were obviously enjoying themselves on stage, chatting back and forth during songs and putting on one hell of a show. At one point a fan brought some drinks to the stage and the band stopped playing and had a drink before picking up exactly where they left off and finishing the tune.

After Malo played a pair of songs solo, the rest of the band came back and played a handful of "false starts" to tease the crowd, including Neil Diamond's "I Am I Said" and "Blueberry Hill" before actually playing an impromptu cover of the Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'."

Highlights of the evening included "Santa Claus is Back," "San Antonio Baby" and the encore of "All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down." There was a big present for the crowd, which came when Raul announced the reformation of the Mavericks in 2012 with advanced notice of a tour and possibly a new record. I know I'll be looking forward to seeing them when they pass through town if the show Raul put on is any indication of how good he'll be with his old bandmates.

Upcoming Concerts

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

Local Artist Spotlight


Karate Bikini - A Simpler Sugar

Wed November 26
Karate Bikini is an eight piece ensemble who's members hail from St. Louis and the metro area. They are a large band with a large sound. Their latest album A Simpler Sugar is full of upbeat pop songs,…

88.1 KDHX Shows

m-grill.jpg

KDHX Recommends

January
Saturday
17

Recording Clinic with Patrick Crecelius

KDHX is proud to host a DIY mixing workshop for musicians at The Stage at KDHX. The clinic will be taught by Patrick Crecelius of Cedar Box Studio. A graduate of Berklee College of Music, his credits include such local artists as Ryan...


January
Sunday
18

88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round Welcomes The Boogers

The Boogers are the brainchild of Dr. Paul Crowe. Fatherhood, a PhD in Developmental Psychology, and 20 years of sloggin' it in wretched clubs as a punk rocker - even opening for Dee Dee Ramone and Marky Ramone - formed Paul's...


February
Sunday
01

Discovery Series

The Discovery Series, a 10-event series spanning February to June, 2015, will not only bring you new music, but also music-focused interactive sessions that take a look at how music plays a role in our society. Each month the...


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

8 users and 13107 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook