Western Courier The Fold Review

Written by evan on February 19, 2006 at 8:15 PM

Couldnt figure out how save this article that was in the western courier as, a pdf. so i am just copying and pasting it here.

The h20 Youth Center hosts a night of rock headlined by The Fold
A veritable bevy of Macomb youths crowded the cozy, crimson-painted club H2O. Teens in Macomb Bomber letterman jackets rubbed elbows with pop-punkers decked out in studded belts and Chuck Taylors atop the venue's
checkerboard floors.

Social cliques put aside, the crowd assembled on a frigid Saturday night to rock out to the musical stylings of four different rock groups. H2O offered an intimate stage setting with the crowd able to stand directly in front of the performance area.

The first band to play for the excited crowd was Macomb's Without Wednesday. The energetic pop-punk trio launched into its first song, only to succumb to the unpredictable and disappointing fate of a broken guitar string. Fortunately, a replacement guitar was found among the crowd and the show marched forth.

While singer/guitarist Noellen's voice rang clear over the up-tempo drums and distorted guitars, bassist Arlo shrieked into the microphone and finger picked bass lines. Two-minute anthem and set-closer "M.I.A." got the primarily teenage crowd moving with the hook-laden guitar fills and chorus.

Second on the bill, Peoria-natives The Charter North took the stage to fill the audience with upbeat and driving guitar riffs. Its sound could be compared to "Illusion of Safety"-era Thrice with more Saves the Day-type of vocals.

Speaking plainly, the band played a very tight set of melodic, mid-tempo rock 'n' roll featuring interwoven breakdowns and intricate guitar progressions.

The third band to ravage the crowd's ears was a melodic screamo band hailing from Chicago, Endless Never. The three-piece threw into the mix a combination of softer crooning from the singer/guitarist, while the drummer offered a throaty growl to offset the emo tendencies.

Transferring from a flanger-tinged guitar effect to a balls-to-the-wall distorted fury, Endless Never's passionate display and driving rhythms rattled the intestines of audience members. The double-bass drum filled in a very full sound akin to "Artist in the Ambulance"-era Thrice.

Whether the band garnered a police presence, or the onset of the nine o'clock hour, the crowd showed no signs of calming down with the headliner, The Fold, taking the stage next. Featuring members of the once-defunct, newly-reformed Villa Park/Chicago band Showoff, The Fold is on tour promoting its Tooth and Nail Records debut "This Too Shall
Pass."

The four-piece band brought a heavy, harmonious sound reminiscent of some of Sparta's earlier material; specifically, the use of dropped-D guitar tuning and slower tempo syncopation.

With the first few chords of their opening song, the kids in the crowd began po-going and getting involved with the music, despite the soft vocal delivery of singer/guitarist Daniel Castady. The band launched into "Backseat Drivers," a mid-tempo tune featuring catchy sing-along lyrics and a driving instrumental breakdown. Putting forth a fine effort, the band suffered technical problems involving the lead vocals, which put a slight damper on the general aesthetic.

Despite being a Christian rock band, there was no sense of condemnation or awkwardness for people who do not ascribe themselves to religious values. While the venue is a smaller area, the lack of unrestrained enthusiasm was slightly disconcerting for the casual punk rock concertgoer.

Also slightly disturbing was the sense of commercial appeal of the players in a few of the bands. "I feel like I have to go buy a new outfit before our next show," said Brent Houzenga, senior art major and singer/guitarist for the local band Me and My Army.

Fashion should not be tantamount to music in rock 'n' roll unless your name is David Bowie. While shaggy hair and guys wearing tight girl pants is ubiquitous nowadays, the passionate intensity portrayed through the music is not. Whatever type of music a band plays, there is no uniform needed for success.

The main drawback from the night was a lack of diversity in the bands' musical styles. While there is endless talent, no one seemed to be pressing into new territory. For fans of The Fold, look for its debut CD out Feb. 21.

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