I was looking forward to my second trip to Mr. T's Bowl since the first time I went there, in October, the billing was either changed or the bands couldn't play. But everyone always has high praise for this venue so I wanted to find out what the charm was.
Isgoodmusic.com presented a program including Seasons, Correatown, Thailand and The Dirty City Friday (December 5, 2008). When I arrived, The Dirty City was into their set of clean straightforward indie-rock to a small, polite crowd that had gathered early. And I'd already missed the first band. I have to say I enjoyed what I heard of them.
Got to chat a while with Marc Linquist before Thailand went on and they seem to be a pretty constant five-piece band now. They want to get a full length CD out before too long and they included a couple of new songs at the end of their set, which are up to their usual high standards.
Their set sounded really polished on Friday, and the gathering audience included Matt Teardrop of Manhattan Murder Mystery and Mary Chartkoff of The Monolators as well as the members of Seasons and Steve Sigl of The Happy Casualties. The sound at Mr. T's is great and they seem to pay close attention to the band's needs. I hardly need to go through it again, but the band performed all the songs I wanted to hear with energy and conviction and I don't think they make a false move.
I think some in the audience were seeing Seasons for the first time and they were treated to a great performance which included some numbers I've not heard before and one sung by John.
In what seems to be my weekly Seasons show, I'm always impressed that they never play the same set list, this time even pulling in some older numbers.
It was fun catching up with the band and John introduced me to Manny, who is proprietor of Mr. T's Bowl. But I'm going to keep this short because everyone who reads this knows how much I like these bands. There are a number of local bands I've followed steadily through this year and I'll post a column devoted to them later this month so I'll write more about Thailand and Seasons then.
Correatown played afterward and I only heard a few songs, but Angela Correa has a wonderful voice and great self assurance in her delivery. Performing with a single accompanist I was impressed by her style and shall undoubtedly see her again, but it was getting late and with a full weekend show schedule I had to cut out.
The atmosphere and the unpretentious manner of Mr. T's Bowl won me over Friday night and the relaxed, friendly congeniality of the clientele and of Manny himself makes for a highly inviting showplace. I'll be back often.