Geroni Listening

June 22, 2009

Show Review: Math The Band

Filed under: Misc. — Teddy @ 7:38 pm

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After about a month and a half of planning and waiting in excitement Math The Band finally played Birmingham, Alabama. The venue was Greencup Books and it just so happened to rival Lynyrd Skynyrd playing in Birmingham’s biggest music festival of the year, City Stages. I think in the end Math The Band was the better show.

I got to the venue at about 7:30 with my younger brother and my friend Will. I’ll try not to name anyone else, because the show was made up of my friends. The show was set to begin at 8:00, I figured this wasn’t going to happen, but whatever. Anyways, we waited and waited and more friends arrived. Two hours later, with all friends outside anticipating the arrival, Math The Band showed up. Their drive from Texas to Alabama was a whopping 11 hours, so we forgave them quickly for the lateness.

The opening act was this local guy who we chatted up before the show. He said he did acapella/harmonica Tom Waits style folk. We were thinking it was going to be awesome. My oh my how we were mistaken. We all headed from the bookstore portion of the space up to the venue to witness what would ultimately be a disaster and a half. The guy got us to start beating on the ground and clapping. Then in a fucked up sort of way, he began to cover “We Will Rock You”. Giggles emerged and I looked up and down the row of my friends, we all grinned at one another. After getting us to say “Whoa” and “Math The Band” during “We Will Rock You” we had to do a weird hissing sound thing for his second song. Actually it was more hissing meets doo-wop meets a siren; he also poorly played an Irish whistle flute. Now Math The Band leaders/members Kevin and Justine were watching in the audience and participating. After his second song he called it quits, Kevin and Justine looked at each other and said, “That’s it?” I regret buying 2 of his CDs for $1 before the show began.

We all went downstairs to the bookstore while Math The Band set up, which brings me to this point. The bookstore portion of Greencup is air conditioned while the venue is not. This meant that Math The Band had a fan pointed on them while we did not. And trust me, in the month of June in Alabama it’s hot. We didn’t let that get our spirits down as Kevin said, “Hey everybody we’re Math The Band” to which we all cheered. “From Massachusetts and I uh guess this is our first song,” then the slow first notes played, someone had to break the dancing tension. Math The Band is total upbeat synthpop you HAVE to dance. So our little front row started to shake and jump then once they hit the meaty loudness of the song everyone went FUCKING INSANE. And there was a good reason, the first song was a cover of “It’s Time To Party” by Andrew WK.

We were tired after the first song. Next came “Hang Out Hang Ten” off of their new album. The dancing was crazy, mainly twenty five or so of us jumping, wiggling, sort-of moshing, running around in circles. By the end of the second song an employee informed Math The Band we had to spread out otherwise we could break the ceiling/floor. Kevin instructed us to spin around and if we could touch anyone then we were too close! It should also be noted that we were dying by this time, I cannot stress how much dancing was done. Next I believe was “Bigfoot” actually it was “Bigfoot”. Our spread outness was totaled after the first minute and everyone was back to doing their own thing.

After “Bigfoot” people started sitting and lying down. No air conditioning + intense dancing= people cramping in the stomach. But Kevin said they had 23 more songs to go (not true) and we had to keep going! The requested “Werewolf Fever” was next, I ran around all of my friends in circles during the intro. Kevin broke a guitar string and only had three out of five left. I wanted to hear “Cardboard Room” but they said they couldn’t do it because of the three strings, bummer. Anyways more songs were played “Everyone’s Embarrassing”, “Why Didn’t You Get A Haircut?”, “Tour De Friends”. The crazy dancing continued; I’ve never seen so much fun non-violent movement to music in my life. Before “Tour De Friends” we passed around the water jug Kevin and Justine were drinking out of, everyone in the venue was so damn dehydrated. And Kevin pointed to my friend Crayton lying on the ground and told him, “Get up Jeff, come on Jeff, we only have two more songs, you can do it!” Crayton got up and said, “Hey, my name’s not Jeff, that’s-” to which they cut him off with the song. Laughs followed.

The last song was “It’s Gonna Be Awesome”, by this point I was really feeling the pain of near throw-up and lack of water, but it didn’t matter, I danced my fucking heart out. After that all us kids tumbled over and headed downstairs. I bought a t-shirt, passed around bottles of water with everyone, and discussed the craziness that had just happened. But what was really fun was that one group of friends talked with Kevin for about 45 minutes and we talked to Justine for about 45 minutes. She had some funny stories about Austin, Texas, baby-sitting Adam Goren’s kid, and getting her tonsils taken out. She’s very nice and extremely cool, a real people person, Kevin was also very nice, and very tired.

All in all, it was the best show I’ve ever been to. Despite the fact it was only 25 minutes, it felt like two hours. The intensity levels were off the chart; I couldn’t imagine myself going on for another ten minutes. I also can’t see another show where every single member of the crowd runs around and dances like pre-schoolers. If you ever get a chance to see them then go. Math The Band is something that needs to be experienced by all. Throw out your ego, dignity, and whatever else is holding you back and have a party.

Some other things:
-It was all my friends, no one else was there. This I think made the show better.
-Kevin said his guitar amp was messing up and it could go out at any time. He was surprised he made it through the first song.
-After the second song someone knocked a string and the lightbulb that was hanging on it went out.
-Kevin broke a string and had only three left on his guitar. My friend Ben got the string.
-About halfway through the show the same employee put up a sign (that can be seen below/when I have a chance to upload pictures) in front of Justine.
-Kevin said they have four acoustic albums done. He plans to release them via cassette and download. These will be the last acoustic albums.
-Andrew WK is going to tour again, mark my words.

I cannot stress this enough, if you have the chance SEE MATH THE BAND!
Love,
Teddy
P.S. My computer at the moment has no SD card, I’ll upload the two pics in a day or two.

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