Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Summer of Ska: The Mighty Mighty Bosstones

Let's Face It, the Bosstones rock.
 The summer of ska continues (and probably ends, really, unless I go to another show), this time with Fast Choker and Mixmaster coming along to go and see the Mighty Mighty Bosstones (MMBT) at the Starland Ballroom.

The Bosstones are one of those bands that has been around seemingly forever, and for good reason--they are pretty damn awesome. I remember hearing "Where Did You Go?" back in high school and liking it a lot, but it wasn't until the release of Let's Face It in 1997 that they really caught my interest. I'd say that album was one of the most played of the year on our floor in the dorm. Indeed, 3rd wave ska was very much alive and adored in the Dungeon of East Ambler Johnston.
It was a devil's night out.

Get those hands in the air!
I think it was that same summer that we saw them on the Warped Tour, along with just about every band we liked. That year was ridiculously stacked and we spent our time running from stage to stage to see all of the bands. Seeing MMBT live was one of those things that cemented in my mind how good they were. Their sound comes together in such a full and refreshing way that reminds me of the big band sound of the jazz musicians I studied in school. That energy was passed on to the fans, who danced and skanked their way through song after song. It was great.

That was the only time I had seen them until the opportunity arose to go this weekend with a couple of friends and reclaim that magic of our own youth. I'm happy to say that the best dressed band around (seriously, their suit game is on point) hasn't lost a step at all and in fact are even more put together and impressive than when I saw them 20 years ago. In fact, they were even playing Let's Face It in its entirety as part of an anniversary tour. All of those songs came rushing back to my mind and I found myself singing along as I danced my face off. No more pits for me, though. I leave that to the professionals like Choker and Mix.

After finishing up that album (which includes one of my faves, "The Impression That I Get"), they went on to play some of their other hits and fan favorites from over the years, including "They Will Need Music," which is almost transcendentally inspirational when you hear it live. It's just that good. Did we reclaim a little bit of our youth that night? I think so, though you definitely feel a night out like this in your bones the next day when the morning hits you. It was a grand time and I'm glad I got to listen to some great music with my best friends.

For the full set list, click here.

PS: We also got to see Mephiskaphiles, who I haven't seen in 20 years either. Still awesome. Also, the other opening act, Backyard Superheroes were pretty damn good too. Love seeing a local band kick ass like that, especially when they rock two saxophones.

No comments: