After having dinner with my kids at their soccer banquet, I rushed over woodsy rural roads to Brattleboro to catch the last few songs of the opening set by Muddy Ruckus. Disappointing as it was to miss the first part of their show, it was great to see them, as I’ve grown to love the band over the last year or so. The Portland Maine duo is now performing all over the country and it is the second time I’ve seen them at the Stone Church.
This is the first time that I’ve seen Rustic Overtones since the memorial show (for me) in Portland Maine just days after the passing of Dave Noyes. This is a more joyous occasion as the band is celebrating the release of their self titled album which is both a celebration of the life and vision of Dave Noyes, and a celebration of Rustic’s interpretation of Brazillian Psychedelic music.
Rustic is one of my favorite New England bands, and I went to dance my butt off. The room wasn’t altogether too crowded which threw me off a bit, but I settled into the vibe pretty quickly. I had recently bought the new album so I was ready when they broke out songs like “Black Shirt.” There were plenty of Rustic classics too like “C’mon” that got the crowd involved in the show.
It was somewhat surprising to see the band’s lineup, which on this trip did not include a keyboard player. Gary Gemitti on drums, Dave Gutter on guitar and vocals, Jon Roods on bass, Jason Ward on saxophones, Lucas Desmond on alto sax, and newset player on trombone and vocals Jamie Colpoys. Somewhat conspicuous is the absence of keyboards as over the last decade or so keys has been integrated into the band frequently- but on this night the band had not difficulty settling into their full sound.
This night’s version of “Iron Boots,” a classic for this band over the years, was especially tasty. “Simple Song” was festive, really clarifying the band’s return to their indie rock roots. Roods displayed his swinging bass skills and it led into a great guitar solo by Dave Gutter. The whole vibe was super playful and patient. The band felt the freedom to stretch out with this intimate crowd appreciating every note.
For the encore the band played their most incendiary song, “Combustible.” Dave Gutter took to the crowd, and partied along with fans throughout the song, making for a perfect ending to the show.
Rustic will continue supporting their new album with show dates in New England in the coming weeks.
DEC 28 Cabot Theatre Beverly, MA
DEC 30 Magic Mountain Londonderry, VT
DEC 31 State Theatre Portland, ME
JAN 17 Brighton Music Hall Boston MA