There are concerts that make me believe in "Rock 'n Roll". The Stone Foxes put on a show that makes me believe. If you have not heard them yet, remedy that please as soon as you get the chance. They prove that rock and folk and blues can thrive together and make a ass kicking live set.
A sold out venue greeted The Stone Foxes on Friday night at The El Rey in Los Angeles. While they were not the headlining act, they put on a headline worthy set. Audience involvement, obviously amazing, musical abilities from each member and songs worthy of a stadium, made for a perfect Friday night out. Stone Foxes opened up for Trombone Shorty who attracted an interesting audience. I was happy to see that many people came early to see the Foxes play and they fell for the guys by song number two. The venue was filled with a very acentric range in the audience, everyone there was very into the music. New and old fans were cheering and dancing by the middle of the set. From the middle aged couples there on a date, to the headbanging mohawk in the front row, they stole the show.
The Foxes’ set list was half old and half a celebration of the new album. While the audience couldn’t quite sing along with all of the words to the new songs, they did get the beats. The guys spent most of the time, switching instruments and taking their turn even as frontman. The band began its set with “Cotto” from the new album Small Fires, the audience erupted and danced more than most LA audiences will dare to. The band’s newest single “Everybody Knows” was my favorite for the night and played well in the middle of the set. It gives every bandmember a chance to switch it up a little bit. Shannon, normally on drums came out to take over as harmonica wielding front man. Keeping the audience dancing toward the end of the night, Shannon yelled to the crowd, “There is a lady up here shaking it! Everyone else should join her! C’mon LA!” Nearly everyone obliged. Cheers to them on that! LA is not always a dancing city.
The stone Foxes have been making their way around the west coast since their very popular show at the 2011 set at Outside Lands in the Bay area. The band is quickly growing a reputation for an incredibly enthusiastic and energy driven live show. Keeping company with the likes of The Black Keys and Muse in the last year gives you an idea of the shows they are striving to achieve. Throughout their set at The El Rey, each band member had his moment in the spotlight. Shannon Koehler, normally on the drum set, took his time at the front while Aaron Mort took his place at the drums. Not one to hide behind the keyboard, Elliott Peltzman, the newest addition to the band, made his way to the front for a song as well. Peltzman, new to the band since their last album, has added a new dimension to their sound and recording process. The band’s update seems to have paid off.
The band closed out their set with a harmonica heavy Mr. Hangman from their 2010 album Bears and Bulls. With a genuine “thank you” to the audience, the guys left the stage to Trombone Shorty.
Their newest single “Everybody Knows” is jam packed with political cries for the 1% and in support of their new album, Small Fires, the band is playing it with pride. This is the follow up to their highly acclaimed sophomore record "Bears & Bulls" that they have been touring on since its 2010 release. Kicking off their current leg of the tour with the February 12th release of the EP the guys are headed out on a North American tour for the first portion of the year. The Album, Small Fires recorded with producer Doug Boehm (Girls, The Vines, Dr. Dog), was played live for the eager audience at The El Rey
There is no shortage of opportunities to see the guys play live. If you missed out on this, do not make the same mistake again. For now though, in case you missed it, here is my interview with Spence from before the show. 'Cause you can never have too much of The Stone Foxes!
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Till next time!
See you at the show!