Friday, September 10, 2010

Hopscotch Day 1: Sleepy Sun & Akron/Family

All night I was hearing people talk about how excited they were to see Akron/Family at the Pour House so it was no surprise to find the venue almost full.

Those that showed up early had the pleasure of seeing San Francisco rockers Sleepy Sun scorch the stage. The band sounds like an amalgam of 70’s classic rock – particularly Led Zeppelin – and they can really wail. At one point, singers Bret Constantino and Rachel Williams held a harmony with a squealing guitar for a piecing banshee-like sound that was pure rock. Sleepy Sun was impressive, but they couldn’t compete with what was about to come.

Akron/Family took the stage a little after 1 a.m. and the wait was worth it. The crowd really packed in and even members of other bands and Hopscotch staffers were filling in beside the stage.

Right from the start the band demanded the audience’s full participation. Akron/Family was taking no excuses from the audience for not clapping or singing along. They opened with "River" and kept the jam going through out the set, rarely taking breaks. Sometimes they gradually transitioned between songs and other times they shifted on a dime. The band really kept the audience off balance going back and forth between upbeat dance numbers to noisy rock breakdowns. Akron/Family really dig into the grooves and mine them until there is nothing left.

Brad from Megafaun joined in on bass as the band transitioned into a Motown cover (I couldn’t tell what song it was) and not long after they brought up Grayson Currin, Hopscotch curator, to give his best screams into the mic.

The lights came on to signal closing time, but Akron/Family was still going. The band didn’t seem to know how to stop and for a set this epic, that was a good thing.

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