It was my first time at the Putnam Den in Saratoga Springs this past Saturday where I saw Barons in the Attic, Wild Adriatic and Deer Tick perform. The venue has a large tented area in front, complete with concession stand and picnic tables. Inside is a huge, wide open room with a long bar on the left, equally as long merch table to your left when you walk in and big stage in the back. I loved all the free space to move around in, with very little view obstruction you can see the stage from anywhere in the room.
Barons in the Attic started the night off to an eager to party crowd. The four-man band from Albany sends out a reckless abandon attitude as they slammed on their instruments during “Julia”. Showing their somewhat softer side was their song “Purple Underwear”, strong guitar notes and a great build up at the end. The crowd charged up and all starting to thrash about as The Barons egged us on and delivered a rebellious energy of punk rock during “In a Nutshell.” The lyrics are bitter as the boys scream and caused a ruckus during “My Old Soul.” Barons in the Attic can always start a party but they don’t guarantee ending it, to which their fans aren’t complaining. For more information on upcoming shows, merch and free music, go to wearebarons.com.
Wild Adriatic is an untamed force that flows with such soul, it quickly catches you off guard and sucks you in. The rock and roll group infuses their music with plenty of funky guitar solos and groovy melodies. Shane Gilman on lead guitar has serious range for vocals and can really hit those high notes. Rich Derbyshire shows no problem of dropping heavy bass notes while Travis Gray shreds on his guitar and keyboard. Mateo Vosganian provides steady beats all night, setting the ultimate dancing rhythm. From the band’s latest album, Lock & Key, they played “Spark” which is just that, a spark that explodes and grows all over the room with sharp guitar riffs and symbols. “Make like a Ghost” sends out a groovy melody that rises and picks you up with soulful harmonies. Wild Adriatic ended the night with their friends from Barons in the Attic, who all participated in their rendition of The Beatles “With a Little Help From my Friends.” Putnam Den was in perfect unison as bands and fans sang for the celebration of the weekend. Wild Adriatic announced their Halloween Show will be with Barons in the Attic at the Bayou in Albany, NY on October 25th.
Wild Adriatic had this to say about the show, “when we close our set, we like to invite other bands, friends, promoters or anyone on stage to sing with us. It’s just a good time for us, and the crowd seems to enjoy it. We never really plan it. We just ask people up last minute. Everyone knows the song and we don’t care if its good or not. It’s about fun and fun is why we all got into playing music in the first place!” For more shows and information, go to their website wildadriatic.com
After way too long of a soundcheck, the crowd exploded once headlining band Deer Tick took the stage and announced, “This is show one of the Deer Tick tour. We’re gonna vandalize all your schools and churches and then pass out on your lawn. But we’re gonna play some songs for you first.” They have a raw sound covered in grunge-ness which surprised me given their “country” music reputation. The music came at me and I couldn’t label it then and I still don’t think I could. Rob Crowell would pound on the keys, sending out organ notes that brought in the “folk” style I was seeking. Ian O’Neil could not be stopped on guitar; fast paced chord progressive gave us the punk fighting spirit. Deer Tick has a fierce stage presence, the artists constantly bouncing on the stage and a mosh pit forms in the crowd. Dennis Ryan kept the drums loud and steady with Chris Ryan on bass.
During the performance, lead guitarist John McCauley had a solo session with his guitar and the audience. “I’m not a poet, I’m not a clown. I just think these things and write them down.” His heartfelt vocals echoed through the room as the guitar notes gracefully followed. After playing a few new songs such as “Old Lady”, Deer Tick played requests from the fans resulting in massive sing-a-longs. It’s no wonder that Deer Tick has a dedicated fan base, given their broad genre playing skills. Deer Tick gained a lot of fans 2 years ago from their performance at Rest Fest in Albany and gained even more Saturday night. For more information and touring, go to their website, deertickmusic.com