Cherry Cola w/RadkeyFeb 27, 2016
It’s been quite a while since I saw a show at the 7th St. Entry; I’m not going to continue that mistake. The lineup for this show was outrageous--Cherry Cola, Radkey, Naive Sense and Ripper. It’s not often that a show comes around where every artist is just as great as the other, but that’s exactly what the Entry managed with this bill. Ripper began the show on a more psychedelic note, moody post-punk guitar licks and emotive singing made the beginning of their set the most low-key part of the night. The band quickly picked up the pace, though. Danny, the band’s front man, told the crowd that they were out of love songs about halfway through their set, before the band ripped through the remainder of their time with speedy and aggressive punk tunes.
Naive Sense has quickly become a favorite of mine over the past couple of months. Their debut release Art Failures manages to include everything I love about punk rock--it’s noisy but also has many catchy guitar riffs; it’s socially aware but it also has some tongue-in-cheek moments too. Naive Sense is even better in concert. The band’s frontwoman Natalie is one of the fiercest performers I’ve ever seen, her vocals are seething with passion, and, if given the chance, she will mosh and stage dive for her entire set. The standout track in their set is always “Disorder Control,” where the band’s intensity and experimental tendencies are put at the forefront of their sound.
Radkey co-headlined the concert along with Cherry Cola. These dudes mean business; they drove all the way from Missouri just to play this one-night show. Following up the energy of the openers was no easy task, but Radkey kept up the spirit of the show and then some. Radkey alternated between playing no-nonsense hardcore songs and some slower more rock influenced tracks throughout their set. Even when the tempo slowed, the band’s momentum never faltered, though. It could not have been more apparent that they were having a blast on stage--front man Dee Radke spent the whole performance head banging and shoving his bassist around the stage, while drummer Solomon never stopped smiling during the set.
Cherry Cola have had a profound impact on the Twin Cities music scene, even though they haven’t been together for a year. Cherry Cola formed after front man Max Timander’s previous band, Stereo Confession, disbanded. Essentially, Cherry Cola is to Stereo Confession as Celtic Frost is to Hellhammer. I first saw them play at the Whole Music Club here on the University of Minnesota campus and was immediately floored. Max has a unique stage presence, he can be intense at some times and relaxed and aloof at others. This makes their concerts unpredictable to say the least. Cherry Cola can go from pounding punk rock riffs to an ambient interlude, only to return with an earsplitting guitar solo. Max finished the concert by throwing his guitar into the rafters above the stage, capping off a killer night of music and leaving everyone laughing as they put on their coats to go home.