Concert Review: Paper Route w/ Public Radio, Andolinoby Ryan G on May 21, 2012 • 10:35 am 1 Comment
Drop what you’re doing and go listen to Paper Route right now. Seriously.
Now that that’s out of the way, I can tell you about the best $10 I ever spent on a live show. Paper Route of Nashville has been playing some select dates to build support for their impending sophomore release The Peace of Wild Things (which has faced many frustrating delays). One such date was at the intimate Skully’s Music Diner in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio groups Public Radio and Andolino opened.
Andolino is a group of friends that met through connections at Rosedale Bible College, and despite one band member’s humility displayed to me before the show I believe this band has great potential. A bevy of influences are apparent with these guys. A little bit of Radiohead. A bit of Fleet Foxes. A bit of Silversun Pickups. Even a bit of Deadwood Floats (another popular central Ohio band). In short, these guys have great stage presence, great harmonizing ability, and great musicianship. Set-ender “Tired and Torn” was especially good.
Public Radio of Akron, OH came on next, and to be honest my initial thoughts were “Meh, another generic pop-rock band.” They sounded above average for an unknown band of their genre though. The musicianship was tight, and it was fun to watch their borderline angry-looking drummer get into it. They have the air of veterans, and definitely project the ability to appeal to a wide market. If the right people notice them, they certainly could.
A short set change, and Paper Route came onstage to the slightly foreboding “Are We All Forgotten.” Let me just say right now that these guys are flawless onstage. They do what every good band should do, and take already excellent songs and make them BETTER live. It never fails to amaze me how bands in the general umbrella of Paper Route’s genre give some of the most intense performances I’ve seen. “Wish” and “Carousel” followed, showcasing the drummer’s frenetic persona. He was very fun to watch. A couple new songs followed, which drew the crowd in well. At this point it was announced that the band tentatively planned to be back in August hopefully around the release time of The Peace of Wild Things. An oldie, “Enemy Among Us” came up next followed by some more new tunes, including the already released “Better Life.” The band chose to end their main set with the impeccably catchy “Gutter.” I don’t know why, but I just love it when bands incorporate effective use of synth percussion pads into performances, as they did in “Gutter.” Such a fun song. After an inevitable encore, the band re-emerged to the epic album closer of Absence “Dance on Our Graves.” The frontman proclaimed that it “was a hard song to write, and there are many like it on the new record” (paraphrasing). A predictable, but appropriate ending to a great show.
Paper Route is undoubtedly one of the most underrated touring bands today. The fact that they have faced so much trouble trying to get The Peace of Wild Things out is pretty much criminal, and I wish them the best. In a way, this is what I am tuned UP exists to help combat – I want to show you who to support, and point out the unique ways that the music industry is moving forward amidst all the turmoil in old business models. Paper Route is caught in this mess unfortunately, and they ought to have big things coming their way. In the meantime, buy Absence and catch them live. You won’t regret it.