BY TIM HINELY
A few friends had bailed but I wasn’t about to miss the Denver debut (Larimer Lounge) of Australia’s Rolling Blackout CF (at least I don’t think they’d played here before).
Had to endure a few openers but the first one, Serpentfoot, wasn’t hard to endure. A trio from Fort Collins who had a fierce yet fun sound. Taking at least a few cues from Thee Oh Sees they hammered out a good 30 mintues of gritty, psychedelic rock that wouldn’t have been for the faint of heart had the main vocalist/guitarist guy not belched into the mic a few times and offered a few cheery greetings to the crowd. They didn’t take themselves to seriously, but a handful of the songs were seriously good. Definitely worth your time.
Up next was Denver’s own Turvy Organ and I couldn’t get a handle on this bunch. Their quirky indie rock I know that they didn’t do much for me and that’s about all I can muster in this review.
Rolling Blackouts C.F. came out amid a mini light show and the 5-piece (3 guitarists: Fran Keaney, Tom Russo and Joe White, all of whom sing and the rhythm section of (Joe Russo on bass and Marcel Tussie on drums) and they wasted no time, busting right into a couple of hits off of their handful of EPs (released here in Sub Pop) and their forthcoming album (which, judging by the songs played tonight, is gonna be a doozy). They specialize in fast, strummy pop tunes with slithering guitar leads all over the place (think The Feelies raised on Vegemite instead of Land O’ Lakes and you’re in the ballpark). Each guitarist sings which gives a real vibrancy and depth to ther songs while the rhythm section hung in there in near-perfect cadence.
We heard a clutch of songs off EPs Talk Tight and The French Press including the title track of the latter and “Clean Slate” off the former plus other cuts like “Julie’s Place,” “Fountain of Good Fortune” and “Sick Bug” and had the packed house at the Larimer eating out of their hands. We heard a few new ones too, off the bands forthcoming LP, Hope Downs, including “An Air-Conditioned Man” and “Mainland” which both sounded ace.
The frenetic energy of these songs couldn’t be denied, the band was locked in and plenty of mouths were agape. Denver certainly gave them a much-deserved warm welcome.
It seems like the future is bright and endless for these 5 gents. With songs this good they can just keep going. I’m going along for this ride.