Saintseneca @ The CedarJun 15, 2014
On 6/14/14, Pony the Mustang, Emot, and Blessed Feathers joined headliner Saintseneca to put on a memorable show at Cedar Cultural Center.
PONY THE MUSTANG
The concert opened with local rockers Pony the Mustang, who started their set with a rousing rendition of a song that included the repetition of their own name. Each of the band’s four members- lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Josh Thacker, guitarist and vocalist Kolby Dickens, bassist and vocalist Justin Donley, and drummer Steve Schmidt- sipped from glasses of beer as they addressed enthusiastic shouts from audience members and friends. The band brought an impressive energy to the stage, combining up tempo beats with impressive “ooh” harmonies. The talent of the lead vocalist, Josh Thacker, was apparent as he rapidly switched between the guitar, maracas, and tambourine.
Next up was Emot, a local indie four-piece consisting of Matt Leavitt, Dan Choma, Justin Hartke, and Robert Mulrennan. Their songs were markedly slower than those of Pony the Mustang, with long, sustained tones and lyrics that evoked rich imagery. The lead vocalist provided the audience with friendly banter that allowed the emotional weight of each song to be lifted.
The final opener was Blessed Feathers, consisting of the recently married duo of Jacquelyn Beaupre and Donivan Berube. Although it contained three guitars and was backed by a standup drummer, the band began their set with an acoustic duet between its two principal singers. Electric guitars provided soaring melodies to match simple, often heartfelt lyrics; the highlight of the set being the closing song “Everyone I Love Is You,” another sweet duet between the couple.
At about ten thirty it was finally time for Saintseneca, the Columbus, Ohio-based folk group consisting of Zac Little, Maryn Jones, Steve Ciolek, and Jon Maedor. The audience cheered with recognition when Little and his fiery moustache took the stage, followed by the rest of the band members and their unique collection of instruments. The set began with “Acid Rain,” a crowd favorite that had audience members stomping their feet to the beat. Shortly after the musicians proved their talent by switching instruments and playing “Happy Alone,” and “Visions,” arguably the two most popular tracks from their new album Dark Arc. The strings of each instrument blended beautifully with Little’s and Jones’s vocals as they rose and fell over dark, haunting melodies and lyrics, and stomped powerful beats onto boxes that contained tambourines. Needless to say, it was a good night to spend sheltered from the storm at the Cedar.