Saturday January 9th the Oregon Express held a special charity show with door proceeds going to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Dayton, helping shape the futures of area youth. January is mentoring month. A Shade of Red, Evil Eye Gypsy and ThunderTaker brought the soundtrack of the revolution, stepping up with a blended night of rock, not too heavy, but heavy enough to be remembered. Accompanied by, the alluring aromas of mystic pizza lingering in the air like burning incense.
While the Bengals and Steelers went at it on the field in a downpour the bands played their stuff, often providing a soundtrack to the drama.
A staple of the Dayton scene combining alt garage rock, shadows of the 60s with a bit of 70s attitude A Shade of Red started. They have made Old Yellow Cab Building their home among other local venues spreading their crimson mark. The motion and pace of the demented ballerina on strings came out in the notes of “There She Is.” Its melancholy sound and grungy energy told the tale. Oozing a woozy, bluesy vibe on the wah-wah, we got a taste of Janis Joplin and Grace Slick on the sultry “Temptations.” “Someone must’ve scored a touchdown” as the flat screen roared across the room. The running, chasing pace of the next tune chastened those that staggered forward will ill intent. The pizza evidenced humans love for pizza but “Zombie’s” like fresh meat too.
Evil Eye Gypsy, fueled by Mike Emmons and the hammering sticks of Cat Shift opened with the 70s road rock sound and air-like guitar soars of “All I Had to Say.” It could’ve been the pizza talking but “Mojave” brought out the strange hallucinations and whatever happens to the mind and psyche when you go without water and other stuff long enough. Emmons poured fluid guitar notes into the dry wastelands.
Jimi was jamming on the wall so they played one of his best tunes. The spirits were flowing, the pizza was eaten and the game was in full swing last minute battle mode, all for a “Good Time.” “W.R.L.” provided the atmosphere and mood needed for anyone looking for an experienced female companion. “Bitter Comedy” was eerie and trippy with psychedelic, slicing notes. They ramped up the crowd and those yelling at the TV in the finals moments with a double helping of Sabbath on “Paranoid” and “War Pigs.”
The name ThunderTaker might conjure images of decadent 80s metal, an AC/DC tribute band or a rather large, dark and looming pro wrestler. However one of Dayton’s up and coming new bands finished the evening with a set of infectious, movement inducing funk, rock, metal and reggae. Linda Perry (4 Non Blondes) with the power of Anne Wilson could describe vocalist Parisa Samavati providing the pipes of a diva with some Stevie Nicks aura magic. Samavati carried a natural stage presence, sharing some vocal similarities with Dayton’s Kimberly Weiss.
The funky intro to “Don’t be a Stranger” got the late night grooves going and blood flowing again. After the thunder mother roared out their signature tune they brought out some classic Heart and went full blown “Barricuda.”
“Control, Alt, Delete” was dedicated to everyone that watches the show through the eye of a cell phone. Just for once, put it down and look on them with your own eyes. They encourage going old school, recording with your eyes, ears and mind.
With its reflected stained glass smile “Smoke and Mirrors” finished off the nights originals before they welcomed The Darkness and “A Thing Called Love.” They could not end without dropping the hammer of the gods with a salute to “The Immigrant Song.” An EP is forthcoming.
More information on Big Brother Big Sister of The Greater Miami Valley can be found here
Images by Mike Ritchie