I don't frequent a lot of punk shows, so I am by no means an expert on the subject, but as an open-minded general lover of music, I still made my way down to Moe's Original BBQ to check out a punk/ska showcase. I don't think you necessarily have to be an expert in a certain kind of music to evaluate a show - if one keeps their ears and eyes open the feel of the show should come. With that in mind, last night's show at Moe's Original BBQ had such incredible energy throughout the night, I can easily say that it was an awesome show.

The Ska Skank Redemption

The show began with local seven-piece ska band The Ska Skank Redemption. The members Sara LeFevre (guitar), Corey Golon (bass/vocals), Royal Langer (drums), Mark Kinz (trombone/vocals), Kyle Etges (saxophone/vocals), Adam Ross (saxophone), and Hannah Lewis (trumpet) perform authentic high energy ska with a healthy does of punk attitude. From the opening salvo of "Fluffy Unicorns" to the closing number "Going To Hell", the band's big sound filled the small venue and immediately enticed the crowd to skank early and often. Each member of the band was extremely fluid with their instruments and boasted a strong stage presence, ensuring that the night started off with a bang.

The Repercussions

Next up was local punk group The Repercussions. This five-piece band consisted of  Nick Dolan (drums), Brandon Conrad (bass), Ira Dechter (guitar/vocals), Brandon Davis (vocals/guitar), and Sam Goering (saxophone). This band upped the ante when it came to delivering intensity and energy with their uptempo punk songs. Songs like the opener "MRI" and the driving "Agents" were saturated in fierce energy. The Repercussions also mixed in generous amounts of ska and slower paced reggae in some of their songs to balance out their set. "I See It All" got the crowd bouncing with energy and "Polluted" initially barraged the crowd with ferociousness before it broke into a more reggae-like flavor. The Repercussions are good mixture of hard punk and ska/reggae, and where a great fit to continue the transition into harder punk.

Save The Swim Team

The next band was the sole touring band of the night, Save The Swim Team. This seven-piece band is Max Klasky (bass), Brent Friedman (drums), Scott Wellborn (guitar), Zack Klasky (saxophone), Doug Nye (guitar), Dan Curry (trombone) and Richard Martin (lead vocals). Once again, the intensity meter tipped up just a bit higher with this band, whose sound consists of a blend of hardcore punk, ska, and sudden intense, growling breakdowns. Most of their songs will seamlessly incorporate all those elements, making each song almost like an epic sonic journey thanks to the band's skill at mixing up tempos, rhythms and time signatures without skipping a beat. Songs like "Black Friday" could go from very uptempo, heavy guitar and drums to energetic horn dominated ska. I liked the skank rhythm ska treatment they gave to their cover of System of a Down's "Chop Suey". These guys showed off great instrumental skill and were very fun to watch.

Potato Pirates

Finally, Denver's own Potato Pirates came out to finish out the night. This five-piece punk band featured Vinny Capaldo-Smith (guitar/lead vocals), Scott Risch (bagpipes/lead vocals), Steve Stackhouse (drums/vocals), Andrew Williams (bass/vocals), and Matt Emrick (lead guitar/vocals). This hardcore punk band brought the energy and intensity that was building up all night to its absolute peak. Their fierce, uptempo, heavy guitar and blast-beat infused punk music riled up the crowd into a frenetic riot, helped along by the astounding stage presence of the members of the band.

Potato Pirates

"Port to Port" began the show almost like a call to arms - the bagpipe melody lured the crowd to the stage and once the drums and guitar parts hit, it seemed like an explosion went off in the audience as bodies began to fly up and down the floor. From there, they mixed up a set of both their own hard-hitting original songs and covers of crowd pleasing favorites. There was so much energy both in the crowd and up on stage, it was amazing the small venue walls of Moe's Original BBQ could contain it all. Singer Scott Risch was bouncing around on stage so much his head just happened to meet the head stock of a guitar giving him a nice little attractive gash on his forehead as he performed the rest of his set. The crowd was amazing, jumping up and down and shouting along to each song - everyone just completely rocking out. If you are looking for local representatives of high-energy punk, the Potato Pirates have it.

See more pictures from this show in the Facebook photo album. Like the Concerted Effort page and stay up to date.

4 Responses so far.

  1. Mark SSR says:

    Love the review! Ska Skank will definitely get in touch with you about those pictures!

  2. Ska Lover says:

    Love Ska Skank Redemption. They are kick ass. I try to get to every show.

  3. ultigirl says:

    Great review. Lots of times when open-minded lovers of music catch these genres, they miss the fun and energy that makes punk/ska/hardcore the big "RESTART" button that it is in my life. You captured that energy perfectly. I loved that you got into STST too. It was the first time I caught these former-Coloradoans as well. They aren't as approachable as PxPx but they were fascinating.

  4. Anonymous says:

    great pictures! very interesting to hear your review about this show. i finally got around to checking out your website. this is the third or fourth show iv seen you taking pictures at. im very interested in possibly talking to you about what you do and any advise you may have in camera settings for taking pictures in these kinds of lighting situations.

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