Sunday, March 04, 2012
Onward, Soldiers (and Kyle James Hauser)
(photos by Thomas Peipert)
The North Carolina quartet Onward, Soldiers like when people dance to their songs. They've turned up the focus on the piano with their second album, and with their lyrics, they rhyme "Oklahoma" with "coma." What's not to like?
The band got a boost from having "Stick to Your Guns" off their first album featured on "One Tree Hill" and "Let the Time Roll By" landing on a CD that helped relief efforts after the Gulf oil spill.
Last night in Denver, it was a bit of a family affair for Onward, Soldiers at the Walnut Room, with lead singer Sean Thomas Gerard's girlfriend, mom and cousins in the audience as they rolled through a bunch of their songs, new and old. The audience was reverent and quiet through most of the set until they finally started dancing up a storm to "Let the Time Roll By" off the first album "Ghosts in This Town." (It's hard not to get up when drummer Kevin Rhodes is standing up behind his drum set, beating the drums.)
The band also played "Telling Nobody" off the new album, which was just released last month. Another highlight was "Cry," with 3-part harmonies (with drummer and Winoca Records co-founder Kevin Rhodes and guitarist Lincoln Morris chiming in behind Gerard)
If you missed them at the Walnut Room, you still have a chance to catch them in Denver at Vine Street Pub tonight, 3/4, around 10 p.m. They'll also be at SXSW.
Frankly, I was just as happy to hear Kyle James Hauser, sans band, opening for Onward, Soldiers (and The Yawpers, who came on after the soldiers).
He played "Oh Oh" off his new album. He also played a song he wrote about a would-be co-writer who would come over ostensibly to write but then shoot up and pass out in a corner. Sorry, I forget the name. Someone help me with that. He also jammed on the banjo, throwing in bits of "Blackbird" and "Norwegian Wood" there for fun. He'll be at SXSW but also plans to play with his band at the Hi-Dive 3/25. His new album (well, it came out in November or something) is $10.