Wednesday, May 21, 2014
So On Friday night, April 16th, I rode my bike over to Strange Brew to check out some music. I know that a lot of the reviews on this blog have been coming from Strange Brew, but what can I say? It's really close to my house, it has great sound (some of the best live sound engineering of any venue in Austin, in my opinion), and it has reasonable prices on a pretty decent beer selection. I can also ride my bike there, which is really cool. It's great to have a nice place to see music in the neighborhood.
Anyway, I didn't really know who I was going to see, but it was Friday night at Strange Brew, so I figured there was a pretty good chance that there would be a good show. As it turned out, I was right.
The act that night was Lisa Tingle and her extremely capable band. I'd seen Tingle's name pop up in various articles and blurbs about the Austin music scene over the years, so I knew she had some respect on the local music scene, but I didn't know much about her.
I went into the listening room, got in line to buy a beer, and realized I was waiting in line behind Malford Milligan. It's probably a good sign when you don't know a lot about an artist, but Malford Milligan is spending his Friday night to come out and hear her sing.
So I got a beer, grabbed a seat, and looked Tingle up on my iPhone. Apparently she's picked up prizes for Best Female Vocalist of the Year, Musician of the Year, and Album of the Year over the last decade at the Austin Music Awards.
Her set was really good. Her music was sort of funky, bluesy, rock. It made you want to dance, or at least tap your feet, but it didn't blast out the audience in the little room at Strange Brew. Tingle has a voice which is, by turns, powerful, soulful, and sometimes delicate. She sings with passion, unapologetically putting herself into her songs. You really get the sense that she loves to perform.
Her band was great. She had Dave Sebree playing guitar for her. I really enjoyed his style. He's an extremely talented guitarist in a technical sense, but he didn't just try to constantly overhwelm the audience with flurries of rapid fire notes. Instead, he played rich, textured melodies and solos. At times his style reminded me of Andy Summers, employing lush, rhythmic chords and arpeggios as opposed to the guitar pyrotechnics that you get with a lot of rock and blues guitar players.
Yoggie Musgrove played bass. I've seen Yoggie play before with The Apostles of Manchaca and possibly another band or two, and as usual, he was good. He just sits back there and lays down a solid bass groove that cements the songs together while keeping them moving. Every once in a while he'll throw in a little run or lick just to remind people that he's got some serious chops, but most of the time he's more subtle. Not boring, but subtle.
I don't know how to spell the name of her drummer. It was pronounced something along the line of Justin Heights(?). He was good! He played some interesting parts without making the songs sound cluttered with superfluous drum trickery. But he was a good drummer. I hope he pops up again in some other local bands. Ms. Tingle said he was new to the Austin scene.
So it was a really good show! This town never fails to amaze me when it comes to music. Lisa tingle is a pretty amazing talent, and I happened to just stumble upon her show by randomly biking over to Strange Brew on a Friday night.
Love that venue.
Long live South Austin music. Long live Strange Brew.
Posted by J.S. at 8:26 AM