TAUK brought a jam band triple bill to the Westcott Theater in Syracuse on December 7th. Touring in support of their recent release, titled Sir Nebula, TAUK brought with them friends Consider the Source and The New Daze.
The New Daze were first up. These guys are from Syracuse. They are amassing a bit of a following and for good reason. There is so much talent in this band, it’s easy to find something to like about them. They write great original songs. They put on a performance and have entertaining stage antics that make them a ton of fun! One of my favorite things about New Daze is their knack for turning on a dime musically. For example, they will be hard jamming some spacey notion, and then completely left turn you into a reggae get down. These guys aren’t afraid to funk either. Their set included a great funky cover of the Hot Chocolate classic, “You Sexy Thing.” I’ve seen New Daze a bunch of times and appreciate the fact that each time I see them, I find something new to like. I have yet to have a feeling of, “Enough already,” from them and that says something. When they are the opening band on a bill, I make it a point to be there early and not miss a note. You should as well!
Consider the Source was next. By the end of one of their performances, you feel like you just witnessed a rock opera without words. This trio has been around for years and would be one of the richest bands in history by far if they were paid per notes played. Guitarist Gabriel Marin has some of the fastest hands in the biz and often works the fretboard more like a cello rather than a guitar. He plays a double guitar and puts the top guitar through some effects that produce the coolest sounds. By the end of Consider The Source’s performance, I heard an elaborate xylophone, trumpet, saxophone, and viola solo. And it doesn’t end there. Bassist John Ferrara has equally skilled hands. He can play slap bass so damn fast, I found myself standing there thankful that this man was not my father. As a kid, one of the capital offenses at my house was farting at the dinner table and laughing. Guarantee you a backhand every time! If John were Dad at my table, he could slap you 25 times with one swipe, almost like the Zohan’s kicking foot. I’m gonna thank my lucky stars on that one and gladly accept each one of those single backhands I took. Still haven’t figured out why farts are so damn funny in the first place, but whatever.
Lastly, TAUK hit the stage with a headlining set that I wasn’t expecting. I’ve listened to their new album, Sir Nebula, plenty and I’ve seen TAUK live several times in the past, but always as a supporting act. This was the first time I had seen them headline their own show. They played one big long set that had a great mix of songs, with a focus on the new album, of course. As the name would suggest, Sir Nebula has that underlying exploratory cosmic sort of vibe to it. I was expecting that vibe to translate directly over to the live setting. I was pleasantly surprised when I was expecting them to space my face, but instead they jammed it off my head and straight down Westcott Street. The new live favorite, “Rainwalk,” is pretty cosmic on the album. “Informant” straight up rocks. This night TAUK jammed these songs hard with a lot of improv. I love the mesmerizing way that Matt Jalbert and AC Carter intertwine the guitar and keys. Another highlight of the set was a KILLER rendition of the Nirvana classic, “In Bloom,” done with an instrumental TAUK spin. It is clear that they are falling into there groove as a band and becoming ever more comfortable playing together. They are definitely finding what works! The moral of my story – these guys jam and have a long future ahead of them!
Missed them at the Westcott Theater? Catch them February 3rd at Flour City Station in Rochester and don’t forget they headline a special 4/20 show at The Haunt in Ithaca! Check their Facebook page for more information!
Author: George DiFabio
Photography: Jerrie DiFabio