The long awaited return of Doll Skin brought people out on a misty Friday to The What’s Up Lounge in Mankato, MN. It was certainly a show I had been waiting for. I got to The What’s Up a little earlier than normal, and there was already a good amount of people ready for the show. It kept getting better right up to the start time of the show and I couldn’t help but think that the last few shows had similar turnouts. It makes me happy to see Mankato supporting live music lately!
Diskord took to the stage first a little past the 9:00 pm start time, (I blame Zimmy!), and solidly started rocking the venue. Zimmy’s drink lasted through their first couple of songs before it spilled this time, which has to be some sort of a record! If you read my reviews regularly, you know that I’ve seen Diskord a few times recently and love every show I am able to make it to! They made full use of the small stage and were up to their normal hijinks while playing. Even when the drummer had some technical issues, lyrics were changed to include playing without drums and they kept going! It was another great show by Diskord and I’m sure you’ll be seeing them in your area soon!
Next in line was Next to None. Even though the band members made most people at The What’s Up feel old, the guys rocked out pretty hard throughout their set! A new to me band, I was very impressed by both the music they played and a few of the items on stage. The lead singer had a keyboard setup that was on wheel so he could twist and move it around throughout the show, and move he did! Musically, they sounded most like one of my favorites, Dream Theater. The influence might come from the fact that the drummer, Max Portnoy, is Mike Portnoy’s son! Pretty cool! The songs they played were very keyboard heavy which added an element to make the music stand out from the other bands playing at this show. Next to None is certainly a band to follow and I’ll be curious to see how their career progresses in the coming years!
Finally, Doll Skin had their turn to rock. After a quick intro from Spence, they took the stage and made sure everyone was as close to the front as they could get. I remembered their last show to be high energy and full of fun and interaction with the crowd, but they have really kicked it up since the last time I saw them. The hardly stopped moving the entire set and they had most of the stage to do so now that the other bands had their equipment off of it. Playing up to the crowd for the whole set, they played a great mix of songs from both their albums. Their cover of Alanis Morrissette’s “Uninvited” was highly polished and wonderful to listen to. Even after they finished their set with “Puncha Nazi”, the crowd wanted more! They chanted “One More Song” until they got one! If you haven’t taken a listen to Doll Skin, you should really do yourself a favor and check them out. There are very few shows left on the current tour, but they will start right back up mid-September so head to their website to see all the dates! It’s a show you won’t forget and I for one will be looking forward to Doll Skin’s return to Mankato!
As always, get out and support live music and I’ll see you out there!