What happened on Sunday the 17th was an exceptional example of how Pittsburgh develops a scene. In a crowd of maybe 40 people, I would venture to say that at least half of them were musicians, many from influential bands in the city. This is step one. Step two, which Consider the Source takes care of simply by showing up, is you have to get people's attention.
Many acts attempt step two by creating crazy stage antics, constantly bantering with the audience, or otherwise "performing". But Consider the Source is hardly an "act" "performing". It takes a lot of practice to get as good as these guys. I'm talking like, "Congrats on your baby boy! Here, I bought him a drum kit! Oh, by the way I already have the other bandmates lined up for him. Just give me a call when he can sit up straight." Like someone scouted out these angels at birth... Even bands who sign deals with the devil do not wind up this damned good.
From the first song, the audience was speechless. Muted by the complex, yet engaging, melodies and rhythms that CTS winds through their songs. Filled with poly-rhythmic stops and starts, cohesive melodies, consistant and flowing energy, these guys really know how to transport an audience. Damned good.
New song... "This one's a bit hard" Ah yes, because we all followed what you were doing on the other songs anyways. DAMN, you don't even SEE Gabrial's fingers move while he plays! They are a blur of precision! And then, he is suddenly - as if by electronic magic - playing trumpet, keyboards, you name it! All from the same instrument. Magicians. Damned good. Really f*ing good.
Complex Complex was great as well. God, at any other show I would say they are awesome, and I do honestly respect the fact that they performed alongside CTS. But it's the difference between gods and men. Complex Complex were damn good; CTS played the music of the spheres. It's been well over a week, and I'm still reeling from it.
In terms of feel, Complex Complex is very jammy, more in a Sound Tribe Sector Nine way, with elements of the music. It is dancable, thoughtful music that would lend itself well to a group of people dancing. I found it to get a bit stuffy at times, but the bar had been raised. Seriously, I might have to wait to give these guys a fair review. Though they're damned good too.
Can you believe CC had never experienced hummus?! Well, we're glad ours was first, they enjoyed it enough to say so a few times! yay! Now, had they tried the caponata or the spicy feta, they may never have left Your Inner Vagabond.
So, the show ends, everyone stumbles out in a haze, I eat some fire, we all laugh about it, band gets paid, I get my stuff together... Point being, when I'm at YIV, I'm almost always working. I've been asked to jam with bands before, and have almost always declined (at the Jalsah, it's a bit different, because everyone's "working", and everyone's "playing"). However, after we closed, as I was winding up cables, members of both CC and CTS got up on stage.
If playing along would have assured my certain death, I still couldn't have stopped myself. It felt a bit ackward at first (I'm at YIV, I'm jamming, wait, the bass is too soft, i must turn it up, wait, i'm jamming not running sound!), and I never was turned up all the way through the microphone, but damn. I'm glad I didn't wake up going "I totally should've jammed". I just sang along. It was exciting to be inside the music. Damned fun.
VIDEO and AUDIO recordings of the sets and the jam are coming soon. And they are... yep, damned good!
PS - To all the record exec's out there, you've joined the bandwagon too late. I've decided to sign these guys. Forget not having all the resources just yet, where there's a will there's a way... CTS, welcome to Tarsier!! (wake up, emay, c'mon)