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Wednesday
Mar092011

Middle Brother - Live at The Paradise Boston MA 3.3.11


It was almost a year ago to the day that I first heard the rumors about MG&V, an indie-folk-rock "supergroup" comprised of the frontmen of Deer Tick, Delta Spirit and Dawes.  Now, 12 months and 1 name-change later, Middle Brother is a reality.  I won't go into too much detail on the record itself, but I will say that all of my expectations were surpassed.  Rather than a collection of unpolished outtakes or throwaways that weren't good enough for their full-time bands, the collaboration showcases each of the songwriters in top form - each putting their stylistic mark on the album.  Matt Vasquez brings gritty soul-infused rock, John McCauley his trademark whiskey-soaked country-folk and Taylor Goldsmith lends a heart-on-sleeve croon and searing lead guitar.  It's an album that finds harmony in the cohesion between three talented and unique songwriters.

Fresh off the release of their self-titled album, the "Middle Brother Revue" rolled into Boston last Thursday.  I can't recall the last time I was as excited for a show - afterall, how often do you get a chance to see three of your favorite bands sharing the same stage?  Dawes and Deer Tick both played solid opening sets to a packed house (more on those in later posts...), setting the stage for Middle Brother and underscoring the unique dynamic of the lineup.  On this night, the opening bands' material was much more familiar to most of the crowd than that of the headliner.  With a revolving cast of bandmembers of stage for both of the opening sets, both of which featured crowd-favorite originals and singalong covers, the actual headlining set could have been anti-climatic.  As soon as the threesome, joined by members of Dawes, took the stage, any such notion was erased.  They exploded with confidence and energy, clearly having a blast, playing off of one another and delivering one of the most memorable sets I've seen in a while.

The Matt Vasquez-led opener "Blue Eyes" started the show on a rollicking note, while Taylor Goldsmith's poignant "Wilderness" and McCauley's sweetly wistful "Daydreaming" provided slower counterpoints.  The show, like the album, gave each bandmember a chance to shine, with "Million Dollar Bill" as the sparkling centerpiece with gorgeous three-part harmonies and traded verses.  As a perfectly-sloppy version of "Twist and Shout" capped-off over three hours of music, I couldn't help but think how lucky I was to be able to see this band in person.  Call me a pessimist, but I'm not sure the busy schedules of three increasingly-popular bands will allow for too many collaborations/tours like this down the road.  I hope I'm wrong.

Enjoy a fantastic complete recording of the show below - sound is excellent thanks to a great mix at the Paradise and a clean soundboard+room matrix.  Keep an eye out for the Dawes and Deer Tick sets soon too!  Please support all 4 bands by buying their music:  Middle Brother | Deer Tick | Dawes | Delta Spirit

Middle Brother
Paradise Rock Club - Boston MA
March 3, 2011

Blue Eyes
Mom and Dad
Thanks For Nothing
Someday
Daydreaming
Blood and Guts
Theater
Me Me Me
Wilderness
Million Dollar Bill
Middle Brother
Portland
Twist and Shout

Full set download:  mp3 zip


Related post: Dawes - Live at the Paradise Boston MA 3.3.11

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Reader Comments (10)

Yesssssssssss

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterdc

Great stuff, keep up the good work.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjb

Awesome! Thanks so much for posting this. One of the best shows I've seen recently. Did you also get to record the Dawes and Deer Tick sets? If so, could you please post those too.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

Mega!

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRyan

David, the incomparable zman also taped this show and has it up at etree.

Dawes: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=543096
Deer Tick: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=543097
Middle Brother: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=543098

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commenter:)

Cool - how do his recordings sound? Both the Dawes and Deer Tick sets will be posted soon, soundboard+room matrix

March 10, 2011 | Registered CommenterAdam

this is beautiful. thanks for recording these for all of us to enjoy.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commenter!

Thanks SO much! Looking forward to hearing the Deer Tick set soon. Saw them a few nights later in Brooklyn and loved the new arrangement of Ashamed, so I'm hoping they did the same in Boston.

March 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDan DeMann

Thanks, Ryan (and zman). Now I just need to learn how to deal with torrents. Good project for the weekend... Can't wait to re-listen to the first 2/3rds of that show!

March 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

AWESOME! Thank you for this! Saw them last night in LA. Fantastic show. Was hoping some good soul had posted a live recording of these guys. Listening to "Million Dollar Bill" right now. Chills. Thank you again! - SC

April 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSaganaki Cowboy

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