As a five-piece bluegrass band with roots in Minnesota, Trampled by Turtles projects down-home country charm with a decidedly modern melodic twist. 12 bar blues progressions laced with exotic modal melodies elicited a well-deserved reaction from the packed room of enthusiastic fans. Dave Simonett (lead vox) led the crowd through each song with a characteristic twang and smooth vocal delivery, but fiddle player (virtuoso would be a more accurate description), Ryan Young stole the show. Young’s unbridled energy and pure, unadulterated talent cut through the mix as he delivered riff after riff of sonic perfection. Alongside Simonett and Young, the rest of the band executed their roles flawlessly, delivering a cohesive, jubilant display of just how modern a classic sound like bluegrass can be.
The recent addition of Brown Bird as openers struck just the right chord. Brown Bird is a two-piece ensemble consisting of Dave Lamb on guitar, banjo and percussion and MorganEve Swain on violin, viola, cello, and upright bass. Both perform vocal duties and play off each other like a well oiled ’65 Chevy. The range of stylistic interpretation from both musicians created a genre-bending sound consisting of elements from folk, country, roots rock and even a few songs featuring textures weaved from modal melody and exotic Eastern European scales. A flawless fit for warmup duties they delivered pitch-perfect. Photos by J. Wise
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