That the Entry was sold out for Welshley Arms’ show isn’t surprising. Maybe that it sold out almost as fast as it was posted on the First Avenue calendar. And once I arrived whether that quick sell out was legit or not was put to rest. Within 15 minutes it was almost impossible to for me to move through the crowd with my camera. Luckily with the help of some dedicated fans near the stage though, I was able to get my close up shots and make a few friends while enjoying a night of great rock music.
First up, Charming Liars. A band from both sides of the big water with members from L.A and the UK. This band reminds me a lot of the Night Riots. Vocals came out of nowhere, not that you can know someone’s voice from 20 seconds observing them but I wasn’t ready. These guys have an evident and laid back chemistry and their introductions banter was a good example of it. A classic rock sound, good humor, and great vocals were the dominant traits of this opener. I fully expect to see these guys back at the Entry or another venue in the future.
Second opener of the night was a personal favorite, The Glorious Sons. Hailing from Kingston Ontario this band reminds me of so many southern rock groups I grew up listening to when young. Being raised in a house where my first cassettes included Doobie Brothers, Bob Seger, and others I will always have a place for Southern Rock in my heart. This was also Glorious Son second trip in the last year to The Entry and they had a solid fan presence in the building. A band that doesn’t have one single member overpowering their tracks this is a well balanced group who has done nothing but improve since the last time I saw them. This band will no doubt be headlining many more shows and hopefully the Mainroom at First Ave in no time.
Now, the theme of this concert should have honestly been “Bands I ran across on Spotify and got hooked on”. Because two out of three bands were one’s which I ran across while on Spotify and YouTube when on the hunt for new songs. Logically I went down the oldies but goodies avenue and ran across classic rock bands for the modern era. Welshley Arms was no exception to this theme and I had to chuckle when I first saw their name with Glorious Sons came up for the Entry. Both bands I had found music for and had an entire idea on what they were like live, as people, etc. Then I listened to the rest of their music and realized I was wrong and happily so.
They hit the stage and immediately put their signature sound to work. Something I didn’t take into account with listening to strictly their studio recordings was back up singers. And man did they rock when they got going. More bands should have them as part of their standard set up. Anywho, Welshley has more than a couple sing along songs and they weren’t shy to invoke them on the crowd that night. Legendary is probably the biggest one, and with over 61 million hits on Spotify it’s hard to dispute. But, perhaps my favorite song now from Welshley is Safe With Me. And I gotta say, the back up singers once again came through and rocked that song as well.
Welshley Arms is a band, as I chronically do, that I worried would have a gap to cross with studio to live performance. Their studio recordings are rock solid and have great sound throughout, but a sound that can become a nightmare when taken to a stage especially a small one. This wasn’t an issue for this group thank the music gods, and many of the songs that I liked on their studio records I ended up finding new ones to enjoy when it came to the flesh and blood show. This photographer gives Welshley Arms and their great openers four out of five lenses, great show and vibe. OK four out of five, lenses may be reaching to hard I know. But check these band out they all have something to bring to the table.