Kalamazoo, MI
one-hundred-forty Years of Service to the Student

Music Review

Punk Band Finds Audience in Kalamazoo Basement

(Photo courtesy of WWEMO)

The progressive rock music of MOLD was led by a breathy, high-pitched vocalist and a screaming blues-rock guitar. At times, the group disassembled the time signature and played more quick-paced, staccato instrumentals. Certain songs leaned toward a more hardcore sound, contrasting delicate psychedelica with abrasive, screaming vocals and a distorted guitar.

MOLD was one of three local bands that played for a show before Little Rock natives Radradriot took the stage at a house venue recently.

Or, they at least took the basement. Shows at houses can be much more intimate, and The Free Clinic, located off of Lovell, was equipped with a basement stage and decked out with music paraphernalia that lines the first floor walls. For about an hour prior to when the show started, music-goers congregated on large couches in the first-floor living room amid posters of The Night of the Living Dead, Rage Against the Machine, and Reservoir Dogs.

The three man emo-punk band WWEmo performed first, and they were characterized by head-banging screaming vocals and “hardcore syncopation.” They used syncopation in their songs to add more complex rhythms to generally loud genre of music. Concert attendee Danny Michelin K’18 described it “almost as hardcore with a more complex chord progression. They have a strong emphasis on integrating interesting rhythms.”

The next group on stage, Camp DaD, maintained the hardcore sound but added an interesting beach-pop vibe to the mix. During their third song, audience members danced as if they were at a an early sixties surf club.

Another Kalamazoo College student, Heather Brown K’18, said “I really liked how they incorporated the light, beachy vibe into something that at first seemed a little dark and heavy.”

Michelin said that Camp DaD’s sound was reminiscent of other popular hardcore artists from the early 2000s, but echoed Brown’s sentiment when he heard their third song. Oddly enough, he said, “their third song, the one with the surfer vibe, that one I could dance to.”

When MOLD, however, slowed down their tempo and then picked it back up again, the audience to catch their breath. Right on the next note, the broken, breathy vocals dissolved into a maniacal laughter, and the entire band followed finally appearing lost in a heavy, experimental tangent.

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Punk Band Finds Audience in Kalamazoo Basement