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Must watch video: iLLPHONiCs performing live at the Taste of Saint Louis

If you're like me, you can't afford to attend every single live music show in the Saint Louis area, no matter how hard you want to go. Crazy thing is, all business venues expect you to pay for their tickets. And apparently, the Firebird doesn't accept teary-eyed pleas for admittance in lieu of money! In fact, they get awfully cross at the offer, realizing that cash or credit isn't even a question, and throw us out on the curb every time.

The five members of St Louis' iLLPHONiCS, in a stylized "Digital Age" art banner.

Heartbroken that we've missed yet again another amazing live show by one of our favorite bands, we sulk at home, our brains cruelly playing for us images of what that show would look like. There might even be a particularly vivid clip of the lead singer who is obviously singing directly to you, out of the thousands of people in attendance (further proof this is a fantasy, as the Firebird's maximum capacity is not even one thousand standing bodies).

So when a band uploads footage of their live performances online, it's worth celebrating. After all, there's something about a live show that the official album just can't capture. Perhaps it's the looser feel to it, the active interaction with the audience, and the riffing on and changing of songs that only serves to enhance them.

Plus, there are impromptu covers of other songs! I will always remember the time Brian Fallon of Gaslight Anthem paused in the middle of a track from "Handwritten" to break into a quick short cover of "Come Together" by the Beatles.

And don't forget, bands with enough money hire their own videographers. And as someone who is best friends with a videographer, I can say that they know what they are doing when they shoot concert video. There's no jerky amateur hour movement of the camera or low sound quality. Their job is to make you feel like you're standing shoulder to shoulder with the people in the crowd, watching the band with HD eyes.

Enough burying the lede. Saint Louis' funky jazz 'n' rock band, iLLPHONiCs, has blessed its YouTube following with not one but two videos of their performances at last year's Taste of Saint Louis, the biggest food show in the area and easily a strong contender against neighboring Taste of Chicago. They sound great, they look great, and if they plan on performing at this year's Taste, then we all better order our tickets now while we can.

The iLLPHONiCS performances now online are "Get Ugly", which is from their EP "Reality Check" circa 2012, as well as "Hit The Ground Running", which is from their debut album all the way in 2009. On Twitter, iLLPHONiCs announced that they will be touring through California during April. Sounds like a perfect opportunity to cull together some more live footage, don't you think?

If you like what you hear, jump onto iLLPHONiCS' Twitter and tell them what you think.

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