Calling all mods!
Four super cool bands are playing at Geno’s Rock Club on Friday and I’ve been loving them all, hitting Spotify hard for the past few days.
The lineup for Mod Night is Tiger Bomb from Portland, Chelsea Curve and Muck and the Mires from Boston, and Sharp Class from Nottingham, England.
‘Mod’ is hard to describe in one sentence, but it’s basically a term that dates back to the British ‘Swinging Sixties’ subculture, which was youth-oriented and largely about hip music, fashion and freedom. For a quick and intriguing lesson, watch the first Austin Powers movie.
Now to the show!
Look, I know what you’re thinking: Four bands? But I challenge you to take a nap accordingly and pull yourself together. Plus, it’s all over by midnight, so if you hurry, your car won’t have time to turn into a pumpkin.
It is with pure joy that I unpack these four actions.
I’ve been a big fan of Tiger Bomb for a few years now. The band, formed in 2014, is Chris Horn on lead guitar and vocals, Linda Mandolin on rhythm guitar and vocals, Amanda Ayotte on bass and Jessica Smith on drums.
Tiger Bomb’s garage pop music is fun and fierce and I hope to hear songs like ‘Astro Girl’, ‘Rave On Again’ and ‘Baby Come On’.
The band played a music festival in Mallorca, Spain, last month. Their gig was at the Rosa Del Mar Hotel, which Mandolin said had marble floors, swimming pools and go-go dancers. “The place was packed and we got an encore,” she said of the show.
Mandolin also shared that the band has 15 new songs and hopes to record their third album later this year.
The members of Tiger Bomb are friends with The Chelsea Curve, and when the latter got in touch with the offer to join forces, things fell into place quickly; the same line-up played a sold-out concert in Boston the night after the one in Portland. Mandolin also nodded to Sharp Class. “They’re an amazing young mod band.”
Boston trio The Chelsea Curve, formed in 2019, is Linda Pardee on bass, vocals and keys; Tim Gillis on guitars and vocals; and Ron Belanger on drums and shouting. The first song I listened to was ‘Jamie C’Mon’ and all I could do was nod and think ‘those are my people’ such was my immediate love for the sassy pop tune and the video performed with mods. The song is from last year’s “All the Things” and with each song I was even more addicted.
The band bio Pardee sent me explains that The Chelsea Curve’s mission is to create infectious, punchy, sing-along rock ‘n’ roll. I’d say they defeat that purpose. Pardee said the band is already working on new tunes and plans to release the single “How Can I (Resist You)?” this week with more in the summer and fall.
The other band from Boston is Muck and the Mires who have been killing it since 2001. The band is Muck (Voodoo Dolls, The Queers) on vocals and guitars, Jessie Best on drums, Pedro Mire on lead guitar and John Quincy Mire on bass. A few years ago, they were named the #1 Garage Rock Band in the US by Little Steven Van Zandt on the “Underground Garage National Battle of the Bands” show that aired on MTV. Muck and the Mires have gone on an international tour and are off to Spain and the UK next month. A standout track is the garage rock smash ‘I’m Your Man’.
Completing the great bill is Sharp Class. The band formed in 2017 while the three friends were still students at Nottingham High School. The Portland show marks the band’s first US appearance
The power pop and punk trio is Oliver Orton on guitar and lead vocals, Billy Woodfield on bass and Declan Mills on drums. You’ll know they’re British when you hear them, sort of like Billy Bragg. The highlight shines on Orton’s vocals and fresh, dynamic songs. The title track of their debut album, ‘Tales Of a Teenage Mind’ as well as ‘Living For Kicks’ make me really excited to hear them live and then fangirl after the set, especially as I head to England next month for a music festival.
Between sets, you’ll hear DJ Sherman spin pop, northern soul, R&B, mod and post-punk tunes.
20:00 Friday. Geno’s Rock Club, 625 Congress St., Portland, $12, 21-plus. facebook.com
Live music: gypsy jazz and jam-style Radiohead tunes
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