The Syracuse music scene is, always has been, and will continue to be a bit fickle, showcase the tried and true and have some real potential along the sidelines (meaning-why aren’t some of these guys at all the festivals in town?) The scenes local rock music venues shrank to what seems like just a few as the acoustic cover set and acoustic music in general took over the venues (less dough) and the physical pages that you read. So here are some best of locally but first RIP Station 58 and The Fusion Room.
A lot of great rock still goes down if you are willing to drive a bit to the Rochester area and north towards Watertown (Nautical Turtle, Musician’s Paradise) or Penneville. In town we have The Lost Horizon, The Westcott Theater (same promoters) The F-Shed (same promoters usually) and Mac’s Bad Art Bar has the distinction or perception of being the last man standing for a local rock venue. Yes, I know there are a ton more but ask any rocker if they go there and they get enough press anyway.
Changes in style
While cover bands and tributes have seemingly taken over this town, some of the bands have changed direction completely. Long time king of the draw Under The Gun has gone country, well, a bit anyway although they still bring the rock. Silent Fury did a 360 followed by a 180 back flip and went from radio-friendly pop-metal to radio-friendly pop-country in a snap. Mick and Co. are a talented group and they did so seamlessly as they morphed into Mick Fury & Midnight Moonshine. Some musicians grew into new sounds as well so the metal crowd continues to flood the what’s popular now genre as they age.
Local Best of 2013
- Amerikan Primitive. Hands down the best tunes and the best I saw live. Period.
- Born Again Savages at The Lost with Amerikan Primitive opening for The Supersuckers. The band killed it before AP destroyed the joint.
- Stone Soul Foundation. The band is on the cusp of some serious national recognition and in my interview with guitarist Jeff Wiggins, the boys remain grounded and cool as hell.
- Dee Thorpe’s Symphony of Insanity. After too much time Dee and I got on the same page and I listened to the music. This guy and band-mates will blow you away, nothing like some killer shred work. I look forward to their show in January.
- Under The Gun. No taking away this band. They have thrived for years, had a line-up change and got better. They rocked Balloon Fest plain and simple (pre-country music)
- Just Joe. Well, Joe just (is that backwards?) has talent oozing out of his pores and loves what he does and it shows. His originals and in his performances. Oh, and congrats on the baby there Joe and Mrs. Joe!
- Last Train Out. Their debut CD way back in Feb/March was an excellent stripped down rock and roll CD that I continue to play today.
- Ire Clad. Killer in your face metal and a killer video that made it onto Heavy Metal Television. ‘Nuff said.
- Hobo Graffiti. Have to give props to the bands debut CD, these guys rock and I look forward to see what’s next.
- Blood and Stationwagons at 95X Fest. All of the bands on the locals stage did well but these guys had me and a ton of others stopping and finding out who they were immediately.