Friday, October 29, 2010

Live review: These United States, Thrift Store Cowboys

Posted By on Fri, Oct 29, 2010 at 11:58 AM

These United States, Thrift Store Cowboys, Andy Bilinski

Evening Muse

Oct. 28, 2010

Photos coming soon!

The Deal: Alt-country rock groups These United States and Thrift Store Cowboys are joined by Wilmington singer-songwriter Andy Bilinski.

The Good: The night got started with Bilinski, who made it known that he was fighting a cold, but powered through it to deliver a solid set of songs. He delivers his songs with a comfort and ease on stage that gets your attention easily. His storyteller folk style also draws the listener in. He also showed sincerity and heartache at the right moments, while showing great ability to control the volume of his voice and guitar.

Thrift Store Cowboys were up next. The Texas group offered folk-rock songs with country hints thanks to the occasional pedal steel, slide guitar or accordion. Subtle electric guitar hints, bits of feedback and harmonies showed the ability of the band to construct a song from the ground up while not layering it too much to be overwhelming.

These United States capped off the early show with an energetic yet mellow set. They offered more of a full band sound than the previous acts, again adding in some alt-country hints through the use of the pedal steel guitar. The quintet exudes a lot of energy despite a talk-sing style of vocal that was sometimes difficult to understand. However, the band found the perfect times to ramp up the energy and build from a mostly acoustic sound to a rock ocean that drove forth from the stage like a wave. It took a while for the band to warm up, it seemed, but halfway through their set, they were full-steam ahead.

The Bad: I guess you have to blame the upcoming Halloween weekend as the reason there were only 15 people at the show... it sure as hell wasn't for lack of musical talent.

The Verdict: Three strong acts that would be entertaining enough on their own, but three for one made for a pretty sweet night of music.

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