Michigan heroes, Greta Van Fleet put on an absolutely tremendous show at the Fillmore in Detroit on Tuesday May 22nd.
The sold out evening was the first of three shows that the band is playing at the same Motor City venue this week. Shows will continue on Wednesday and Friday, and are likely to be just as packed.
Beginning the night was awesome Los Angeles band, Dorothy.
With a beauty and power that would match her voice, the band’s namesake started off the night lighting what I’m fairly sure was a Palo Santo wood (olfactory sensations being one of the least of the night’s practiced). The audience responded with overwhelming cheers as the set began.
Dorothy Martin made sure to shout out to Detroit rock city, sharing love with the crowd.
Right before “We Need Love”, Dortohy went acapella singing the word “Love”, and encouraged the crowd to echo back her vocals.
“Close enough,” she said with a smile.
The gorgeous lead singer in fact went acapella a few times, showcasing her powerhouse voice. For the set’s duration, she was joined on stage by four fellows on guitar, bass, and drums.
A highlight of the evening was their performance of “Flawless”, where the band backed Dorothy with great harmonies. During the tune, several audience members put their hands up and swayed to the song.
At the end of their set, Dorothy asked the crowd, “Are you ready for Greta Van Fleet?” After a resounding cheer she continued, “This is a song about freedom. We’re all connected. We’ve got to take care of each other. They can’t control us when we come together and realize we’re one big family”.
Dorothy closed out their evening with “Freedom”, and blew a goodbye kiss to the crowd.
After Dorothy wrapped up, the stage reconfiguration began. After a while, the excited crowd started chanting, “Gre-ta, Gre-ta!”
Once setup was complete, the lights dimmed, and the four gentleman from Frankenmuth took to the stage. With old school amps and rockstar attire, Greta Van Fleet looked every bit the part.
Lead singer Josh Kizska, started off the night singing hometown sentiments. He had a handful of beautiful white roses, and handed them out to fans in the audience. Ladies in the front row were positively delighted at the sweet and classy gesture.
Greta Van Fleet wasted no time in getting straight to the rock! They began their set with the massive song, “Highway Tune”. The audience hung on every note, and the trend continued throughout the evening.
All four members exuded well-earned confidence, that paired perfectly with the precise rock they delivered. Josh Kiszka’s ubelievable voice absolutely soared throughout the theater.
GVF attracted a diverse demographic of young new faces, as well as older rockers who apprecaite the music of yesterday. It seemed every audience member was aware of how big this band will be, as they breathe new life into the rock gods of old.
The band effortlessly translated their two EPs from studio to stage.
Greta Van Fleet has been making giant waves in the music world after the release of “Black Smoke Rising” and “From The Fires”.
In a recent Australian interview, the legendary Robert Plant actually described Greta Van Fleet as “Led Zeppelin 1”, joking that Josh Kiszka borrowed his voice from someone he knows quite well.
Any necessary Led Zeppelin comparisson aside, GVF absolutely put a stamp and portrayal to their performance that was all their own.
The band showed off their talents with super chemistry and fluidity onstage. Right off the bat, guitarist Jake Kiszka hung his guitar over his shoulders and impressively played without looking.
After the band’s own “Flower Power”, Sam Kiszka (who traded off bass and keyboard duties throughout the night) shined with an extended keyboard solo at the end.
Around mid set Josh Kiszka noted, “I see a lot of friends, a lot of familiar faces. It’s our family out there tonight, too! We’d like to thank everyone for being here.”
It was obvious that despite their quick rise into the spotlight, Greta Van Fleet was grateful for the attentive audience.
Josh Kiszka at one point asked the crowd, “Do we have any blues lovers out there?” The band started into an incredible Howlin’ Wolf cover of “Evil”.
At the conclusion of their set, the band carried notes from “Safari Song”‘s riff, hinting at things to come, and that the evening wasn’t quite done.
Ending out with “Lover Leaver Taker Believer”, Greta Van Fleet exited the stage… but the crowd was hungry for more. The theater was positively alive with cheers for GVF to re-emerge. That cheer only got louder when, with a wave, the band came back to the stage.
The audience sang and jumped along to “Black Smoke Rising”. Last but not least, GVF closed out the night with giant track, “Safari Song”. During the closing chorus, Josh Kiszka held out his mic for fans to sing along. The band closed out with an incredible drum solo that built into a rhtymic crescendo. After which, each band member wailed on their instruments, and made sure to thank the crowd one more time.
Greta Van Fleet is sure to ignite the continued crowds in Detroit, and all of those throughout the rest of their tour. The band will be continuing to tour North America and overseas well through the summer time.
Words and photos by: Tiffany Cuthrell
AWOLNATION put on a magnificent show at the Fillmore in Detroit on Tuesday February 13th.
The band is touring to spotlight their brand new album, “Here Come The Runts”, which was released on February 2nd.
Beginning the night was the tremendous band, IRONTOM. Comprised of some AWOLNATION members, IRONTOM brought high energy, rock, and catchy songs that made a memorable impression.
Lead singer Harry Hayes was an exceptional showman, ever dancing and gesturing, while smiling a warm smile.
The LA gents are touring in support of their latest album, “Partners”, which made its debut last summer. They made sure to include tracks from the new release, and encouraged the crowd to sing along, especially during “No matter what”.
The title track, “Partners”, was certainly an indelible highlight.
The band exclaimed, “Detroit! We’ll be at the merch booth, we’d love to meet you!”
True to their word, the band stuck around to meet and greet fans abound. They even had a few free pins to give out.
They closed out their night with “Be Bold Like Elijah”, inspiring the crowd to put their hands up.
They made a tremendous pairing to both bands that were yet to come.
Next up, Nothing But Thieves charged through their set.
“We are Nothing But Thieves from London, England!”
Early on, lead singer and guitarist Conor Mason apologized to the audience, making it known he had the “worst cold ever”, but with the absolute power of his voice, it was impossible to tell.
The band filled up the stage with both prescence and sound – sonically in the same vein as greats like Royal Blood and Queens Of The Stone Age, yet with a rocking, unapologetic vibe all their own.
Nothing But Thieves also invited fans to come say hi at the merch booth, “If you loved our shit”. The crowd was full of loyal fans, dancing and singing along throughout the set.
The band also encouraged fans to make some noise for their predecessors, IRONTOM.
Though their set was short, their impact was most assuredly strong.
AWOLNATION’s set started just before 10 PM. Under dim lights, the mood was set with a south of the border intro. The stage was furnished with all the makings of an AWOL living room, complete with area rugs, snake plants, cacti, and a wooden backdrop.
Casting a sharp shadow, lead singer Aaron Bruno stepped to the mic with a wide-brimmed hat and a serape that read simply, “The Runts” across the back. Soon into the set, Aaron shed the serape, and hung his hat on a nearby cactus.
The band hit hard with high energy from the start with the lead track off of their incredible new album, “Here Come The Runts”. Guitarist Zach Irons shredded and jumped about, each member of the band an absolute rockstar.
Next up, AWOL jammed out “Hollow Moon”, a track from their last record, “Run”. The audience was sufficiently amped, dancing and singing along to every word.
Back to back, the band kicked out more jams from their latest album with singles “Seven Sticks Of Dynamite”, and radio giant, “Passion”. They made sure to include a seamless transition into short track, “Sound Witness System”, sans its introductory rap.
Next, the band began a somewhat stripped down version of a magnificent song off of their first record, “Kill Your Heroes”. Before the song they exclaimed, “Detroit, we love you more than you could possibly know!”
During “Guilty Filthy Soul”, AWOL got everyone clapping along, and encouraged the audience to put their cell phones high in the air.
Before “Table For One” from their latest album, Aaron Bruno expressed a heartfelt introduction.
“This song is about falling so deeply in love with one of your friends that it just breaks your heart… just like it is going to break my heart to leave you guys tonight. This song is called ‘Table For One'”.
Aaron picked up a bouquet of flowers in one hand, and placed a rose between his teeth. He handed the bouquet to a fan in the front row, and tossed the rose into the crowd. A lovely gesture, on the eve of Valentine’s Day.
During “Miracle Man”, Aaron jumped into the pit and reached out his hands into the crowd, being warmly embraced by anyone within arm’s reach.
He expressed, “I feel like this dance floor is about to fucking lose it! That Detroit Rock Energy! We’re so excited!” The crowd went wild to end the song, jumping and dancing throughout the theater. After the song concluded, he asked, “Is everyone ok?” A resounding cheer answered without an actual word.
“This song is off our first album, ‘Megalithic Symphony’. I wanna turn this into a dance party right before my eyes!” AWOLNATION started into “Not Your Fault”, and the dance party wish was granted.
Next, with just Aaron’s voice and a strumming guitar, the band started into “A Little Luck And A Couple Of Dogs”. The guitar quickly transitioned to the intro from Red Hot Chili Pepper’s “Under The Bridge”, and the crowd went nuts.
To close out their set, AWOLNATION ended with the last track off their latest record, an upbeat jam entitled “Stop That Train”. Bruno yelled, “Let’s freak out, let’s freak out!” – ever encouraging the crowd to have a great time.
After the song concluded, the band thanked the audience, and exited the stage.
Cheering, clapping, and stomping in the balcony continued until AWOLNATION graced the stage once again.
They started again with 2015’s kickass track, “Run”. With his hands on his hips, Aaron sang, “I am a human being capable of doing beautiful things”. Before the musical breakdown, he yelled, “HANDS UP! Run!” and the energy throughout the Fillmore was palpable.
“I want more sweat! I want more sweat,” Aaron yelled.
It was obvious throughout the show that each band was excited to be in this city. Before closing out the show, Aaron expressed, “When I first started writing songs many many years ago, I always wanted to say this… Everyone knows all of the punk rock and hip hop history here. I never thought I’d have the opportunity to say – THANK YOU DETROIT!”
AWOL ended their night with their absolutely massive hit, “Sail”. Before its completion, Aaron introduced the band. “Zach Irons on guitar, Danny on keys and wizards, Mike on slap bass, and of course your favorite, Isaac Carpenter on drums”.
He also continued with some wise advice… “Always remember, music is a place to turn to. When you don’t know what to do, you can turn to a song. Thank you so much! God bless!”
AWOLNATION will be continuing their “Here Come The Runts” tour throughout the US into March before heading across to Europe and the UK in April.
AWOLNATION left no doubt that the rest of their tour will be a resounding success, and made a clear statement that they are definitely one of the best bands making music presently.
1. Here Come The Runts
2. Hollow Moon (Bad Wolf)
3. Seven Sticks Of Dynamite
5. Kill Your Heroes
6. Guilty Filthy Soul
7. Table For One
8. Miracle Man
9. Not Your Fault
10. The Buffoon
11. A Little Luck And A Couple Of Dogs (with the intro to “Under The Bridge”)
13. Stop That Train
15. Burn It Down
Words and photos by: Tiffany Cuthrell
The delightful German duo, Milky Chance, made a stop at The Fillmore in Detroit on Friday October 13th.
Starting off the night was Gene Evaro Jr.
The classy songwriter presented a groovy rock vibe with an old school guitar tune.
Gene hails from the beautiful desert land of Joshua Tree, CA. With a lovely voice, an in depth folk/soul/funk tunes, Evaro’s set was starkly reminiscent of all that has been great about music, and all that can be again.
Each of the three musicians joining onstage seemed to enjoy themselves equally. Evaro repeatedly expressed how happy the band was to be in Detroit, and made sure to point out his fellow bandmates onstage, allowing them ample time for their musical talents to shine.
The band has been touring extensively and bringing ample awareness to their music. This was quite apparent as a few members of the audience seemed to not be strangers to the music. Gene Evaro Jr played 32 minutes of excellent jams to make way for Milky Chance.
Right around 9 PM, Milky Chance took to the stage. The happy crowd greeted the fellows with an excited, collective cheer.
The band started off the night with “Clouds”, from their latest album release. “Blossom”, the band’s second LP, was out March 17th of this year. The usual duo was touring as a four piece – two lads on drums, one swapping between guitar and trumpet, Clemens Rehbein on guitar and lead vocals.
Next up was the popular track “Ego”, followed by their latest album’s title song, “Blossom”. After “Blossom” had concluded, Clemens greeted the crowd with, “Detroit! What’s happening?” The audience responded with resounding applause.
A couple of songs later, Milky Chance reached “Flashed Junk Mind”, which REALLY got everyone in the audience dancing. Folks from all ages were grooving and singing along. Even the balcony where I was sitting was literally shaking from all of the excitement!
Throughout the set, just the right amount of smoke emmitted form the stage, creating a perfect ambiance with the band’s unique and colorful lights set up.
When he wasn’t singing, Clemens darted and danced across the stage to play guitar in front of difference parts of the audience.
There was one quick stop in the show when the band was having guitar technical difficulties. Philipp Dausch, who was mainly on drum and percussion duties for the evening expressed, “We have a little problem with the brown guitar. It’s getting fixed now… and it’s about there!”
Once the guitar was back in business, Clemens lamented, “Sorry guys!”, but no one at the Fillmore seemed to mind in the slightest. Philipp would also pick up a bass at times, jamming out sans shoes and socks. Clemens also once swapped out his guitar for a bass as well.
The band even presented “Bad Things”, a collaboration with a musical friend from London (Izzy Bizu), who wasn’t joining on tour, but the track was shared anyhow.
“Easing the pain inside, got me loving all of the time. Keep the bad things out of my mind…”
“Thank you so much guys. The next song is a love song – ‘aww!'”. Clemens mimicked the crowd’s heartfelt sentiment, and started into “Loveland”.
“Take me to Loveland, and no one’s gonna find me…”
Clemens carried out a chorus note that sent the crowd into a frenzy.
After “Loveland”‘s conclusion, Clemens said simply, “This next song goes like, “Eh ah, eh ah…” “Cocoon”, the lead single from “Blossom” began. Clemens encouraged the crowd to echo back the catchy, “Eh ah” that resonates throughout the track.
“Thank you Detroit, yeah!” Clemens threw up a peace sign, and the band exited stage right.
The insatiable crowd kept clapping for their heroes, and after an extremely brief time away, Milky Chance returned to deafaning cheers and applause.
“Thank you guys! We’ve got two more songs for you.”
Clemens started a western-vibed intro into the massive hit, “Stolen Dance”. He was pleased when the crowd sang along to the first couple of lines without any prompting.
Many concert goers were dancing, singing, and even videoing the track. Clemens let the crowd sing the chorus one time through the second chorus around.
He yelled “Yeah!”, and continued to sing the chorus one more time.
For the last song, their dear friend Antonio Greger was welcomed to the stage, and hugged it out with members of the band before starting into “Sweet Sun”. Antonio jammed out on the harmonica as a last song celebratory dance party ensued.
Once the set had wrapped up, Clemens expressed, “Thank you so much, Detroit! Hope to see each other again! Take care! Peace on earth!” He made a heart with his hands, and one of the band’s light displays even took the shape of a green peace sign.
Milky Chance definitely brought a night of fun and great music to the Fillmore.
They will be touring the US through October, and will be continuing the Blossom tour throughout the world, well into 2018.
Words and photos by: Tiffany Cuthrell