Concert Review: Trampled By Turtles, These United States, April 15, Lee’s Palace

Photo By Kevin Fulford

Roots music, as the name implies, is based in large part on tradition, yet at the same time, some of the best roots based music is also predicated on challenging that tradition and expanding upon it.  This past Sunday, Lee’s Palace played host to two bands who both seem to fit nicely in this progressive tradition.

These United States are currently on tour in support of their latest, self-titled album, a concept album of sorts covering numerous styles of American music from the past century or so, and featuring collaborations with such luminaries as  Deer Tick, Cotton Jones, and Phosphorescent.  Their brand of rootsy rock sounds great live and could perhaps best be described as rollicking.  “Rollicking” is not really a word I use often (or at all, really) but it does seem to fit well in this case.  Yeah, we’ll go with rollicking.  They ended out their set by bringing out members of headliners Trampled By Turtles to collaborate on a cover of Steve Earle’s “Steve’s Last Ramble,” noting that it was only the second time they had played it and that really, it was more like a rehearsal by a new band of sorts.  For a second rehearsal, it sounded pretty damn good.

As impressive as These United States were, Trampled By Turtles seemed to take it to the next level.  The crowd was going pretty crazy for these guys, so much so that it almost felt like I was at a punk show at times.  People were crowdsurfing to these guys several times during their set.  Girls were riding on their boyfriend’s shoulders like they were at an REO Speedwagon show or something.  Dudes were even riding on other dudes shoulders.  And all of this for a rather unassuming group of regular guys playing bluegrass tunes. It was actually kind of impressive and heartwarming to see a crowd react that enthusiastically to a band, and a bluegrass band at that. A bluegrass band that incorporates a wide range of influences, sometimes plays at near-speed metal levels of intensity and will throw a cover of The Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind” in near the end of their set, but a bluegrass band nonetheless.  A surpising show of affection from the crowd, but also one that’s well deserved.

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Posted on by Paul in Concerts

2 Responses to Concert Review: Trampled By Turtles, These United States, April 15, Lee’s Palace

  1. Madmax559472

    It was an amazing punkgrass show lol!

  2. Bill Jones

    Wow! What a great concert review. You did a really good job. Keep it up.

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