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Electric Six and the Fever at First Avenue (Minneapolis, MN)

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I was actually pretty excited to see Rock Kills Kid. After hearing their latest album, Are You Nervous?, I had a good idea of the electronic-based rock that I was going to here. Before the show I was able to head backstage and I meet RKK guitarist Sean, which gave me a cool introduction to what was to come. Despite what I’ve heard from a few friends, the band really performed well and the synth transferred nicely into the live setting. One of the highlights of the short set was the cover of Echo & The Bunnymen song “Lips Like Sugar.”

I had never heard The Fever before, so I really didn’t know what to expect. I was talking to a couple next to me after their set and they asked what I thought. I think what blew me away, I told them, was the unique indie-classic rock sound they had. I didn’t want to make any connections between Mick Jagger and singer Geremy Jasper (and for the record, I’m not…just sayin’…) but they certainly exist. Another strikingly unique bit about the band was that they were a four piece with no bassist. Keyboardist J. Ruggiero handled the duty like no other, a very welcomed surprise.

The couple that I was talking to off and on mentioned that this was the fifth or sixth time that they were seeing the Electric Six play, which I thought was kind of bogus since they kept yelling obscenities and “Freebird” at the openers. Just seemed like that’s how the crowd was, all giving the bands a little hard time with “oh-so-last-century” references; Prince was a favorite of the night. When Jasper took exception and started talking about Lake Wobegon people just got more pissed. The Electric Six seemed to turn everything around, and they really impressed me. I am one of the “casual listeners,” I’ve only ever heard the band’s radio singles and haven’t paid much attention to them since. But power chords have never sounded so good. Singer Dick Valentine was a non-stop energy ball, mixing in a healthy dose of push-ups, sit-ups and leg lifts with the bottle of NyQuil he apparently drank before the show. Once again, my new best friends boo-ed him (and the rest of the band, I presume) as Valentine came back onstage alone to start the encore with a solo-acoustic song. Well done, just not Electric-Sixey enough, I guess.