Live show review: Vices I Admire come back with a killer show at the Marquis
Posted on September 17, 2012
Vices I Admire. Not only is it part of a very cool phrase but it’s also a Denver band that I have come to expect big things from.
The first time I had ever had the pleasure of listening to Vices I Admire was back in January 2011. I received “The Politics Of Apathy” and immediately found a fondness for their writing style as well as their talent. Almost a year after that first listen I was finally able to review one of their live shows and quickly realized that Vices I Admire were not only a talented band in the studio but a force to be reckoned with on stage. But just when I was really getting into them Vices came to a screeching halt when guitarist Mickey and drummer Mark left the band. It was an amicable split but I had to wonder, would there ever be another Vices I Admire show? Well, with the blessing of Mickey and Mark it seems Dave and Dan have found two other musicians adept at filling in the missing pieces and are now playing under the Vices I Admire moniker once more.
The Vices I Admire debut show with the two new band members ‘Moustachio’ Tavis Alley (guitar) and Alex Simpson (drums) was held at the Marquis Theater this past Friday night with all capitals and The Hate (more on them at another time) opening the show.
Even though I, like many of you, received Vices’ newly recorded single “Beautiful Fire” and loved it I still went to the show with some trepidation about how they may sound live with two new guys in the band. I needn’t have worried. As always Vices I Admire put on an electrifying show and other than a few minute changes to a couple of the old songs they sounded exactly the same.
Although far from full, Vices got a commendable crowd at the Marquis for their first show with the new line-up and most if not all of the people in attendance stayed until the last song of the night. There were obviously many long time Vices fans as I heard and saw numerous people singing “The Politics Of Apathy”, “Hero” and many other songs right along with Dave. There were a couple people dancing wildly while others danced inconspicuously, bodies barely swaying back and forth. There were some people that were trying to mosh? If you have ever been to a Vices show you know these cats can rock the hell out, but moshing to their music? Not so sure about that one.
The enthusiasm the band shows on stage hasn’t changed either. There is still a frantic almost pent up feeling from their live show, like if the guys don’t charge through a show full steam ahead they may self-destruct and they seemed almost fidgety in their earnestness to play.
Alex does a fantastic job on drums especially when you consider the very different beats of a lot of the songs. Vices are not a 4-4 tempo band. There is some odd timing on a lot of their songs and there are a lot of odd fills here and there that Alex had to learn, and learn them he did. His timing was almost impeccable on just about every song they played.
It seems that Tavis is more than qualified to fill in the empty spot left by Mickey. Where Mickey would “dance” around while playing guitar, with legs flying all over the place Tavis is more reserved…….but not by much. Watching “Moustachio” on stage you can see the music slowly taking over as he starts moving deliberately at first but loosens up more and more as the music takes him, limbs becoming more fluid with each note he plays, and he plays well. Just as Alex had to learn the drum parts so did Tavis have to learn all the guitar parts which are anything but simple. What might sound like just cacophonous guitar noise by itself becomes melodious when played with the music of the rest of the band and a guitar player has to know how to write and play so that his parts add to, rather than detract from the song, and Tavis does this quite well.
As always Dan and Dave are the ultimate professionals on stage. Every note, every bend of a bass or guitar string carefully calculated to make sure the live songs sound the best they can.
Dan is a great bass player but stays somewhat out of the limelight. Watching him though, you know he is comfortable with his bass slung over his shoulders, hammering away at the strings bringing an almost funky low end to the songs. He also has a pretty decent voice when he sings back up, but most people may not realize this as ninety percent of the crowd watches Dave.
Dave exemplifies what it means to be a front man. He puts his soul into every word that comes out of his mouth whether it’s a growl, a shout, or he’s singing softly. Eyes darting back and forth fervently from face to face he makes sure he’s getting through to each and every person in the crowd. I have said before that he sounds like a cross between Eddie Vedder and Davey Havok and I still stick by that although when he wants to he can get his voice quite high almost bordering on shrill. Generally the persona of a band rests on the shoulders of the vocalist who is usually front and center and it seems that Dave is mighty comfortable with that weight.
The new song “Beautiful Fire” was played beautifully and brilliantly but the surprise of the night came with the last song. Vices took a calculated risk I think in playing a slow acoustic song for the very last song of the night, and it’s a risk that paid off.
There were supposed to be four stools on stage for each of the guys to sit on for the acoustic song but after a short search they came up one stool short to which Dave replied, “Fuck it. I guess I’ll stand”. Two acoustic guitars, a bongo style drum and four guys proceeded to play one of the best written, most well played acoustic songs I’ve ever heard.
So! Vices I Admire is back in the saddle and still playing that same style of alternative, frantic rock they have always played. They are still giving the crowd a hell of a show, they sound great, and they still play wonderfully on stage, and even if you don’t like the style of music you have to appreciate the willingness of the band to keep things going and the talent and professionalism these guys display on stage.
Way to go Vices! We’re glad your back.
For more information on Vices I Admire please visit:
Vices I Admire on stage at the Marquis Theater. Photo by Paul Edmisson
Dave Curtis of Vices I Admire. Photo by Paul Edmisson
All Photos Copyright © 2012 Interstatelive.com
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