The genre in question is reggae/funk, and Wait for Green is that band with ‘something’.
Originally from Florida and now centralized in Venice, Wait for Green hit up the Roxy on Sunset on Saturday night. I made sure to go and witness my first WFG show.
The most impressive aspect of the band (comprised of Drew Dockerill on guitars/vocals, Rafael Britto on lead guitar, AJ Larson on bass and Danny Morledge on drums) is the thickness of their live sound. They played to a sparse crowd, but didn’t let that slow them down one bit. Even after some technical difficulties, which forced Dockerill to give up his guitar to Britto and perform the rest of the set without his instrument, they jammed through their roughly 30-minute set with determination.
Watching them play, I realized what it is about them that makes them stand out in my mind from the contemporary reggae/dub bands such as Rebelution, Iration, Passafire, The Dirty Heads and The Expendables, to name a few: Wait for Green aren’t afraid to jam out their songs into space-y dub, as evidenced on songs like How Far I’ve Come. When they do, it’s pretty mesmerizing.
Another thing that appealed to me was AJ Larson’s onstage bass work. Not only was he using a Warwick bass, the chosen model of 311 bassist extraordinaire Aaron “P-Nut” Wills, but he even moved around onstage with a similar energy to that of the Nut himself. It led me to believe that Larson and the band are fans of 311, which scores them immediate points in my book.
Besides the personal bias, Wait for Green’s songs are just really well done. Day One stands out among the rest, probably why it is going to be in an episode of the NBC show “Chase” tonight (I think that’s what Dockerill said at the show). They have an easygoing vibe that is somewhat more substantive than some other bands of this genre, lyrically and musically. The guitar work by Britton and Dockerill play off each other very well, creating a thick, layered guitar melody in nearly every song.
They played a lot of brand new songs at the show, songs off of an upcoming album, which they are currently recording.
I could easily see this band catch on with Law Records and get on tours with some of the aforementioned bands. Wait for Green definitely deserve as much attention, if not more, than others that are currently packing mid-sized concert halls from coast to coast. They do the “reggae vibes” thing that so many other bands do, but with greater precision and a maturity seemingly beyond their years.
They’re playing the Viper Room on March 13, so if any of this sounds like your thing, make sure you check out the gig and see how good Wait for Green are.
Here's a video of How Far I've come from one of their previous Roxy gigs: