There was a little controversy surrounding Saturday nights show at The Mansion as KPP Presented Flash Lightnin’, Beginners Guide To Endings and Rye & Silence.
I understand both sides where the problems were, but it was just one of those situations that happened. The night started off rather late around eleven with the opening band taking to the stage Rye & Silence. I see why they wanted to play as many songs as they could with the time that they now had but instead they chose to play around four more songs after they were told to play only one more song. It is hard enough as it is to break into the Kingston Music scene so I understand why they wanted to keep on playing but in hindsight they were also the out of town opening band as well. To finally finish off their set the stage lights ended up getting turned off on them, but amazingly they still played the last couple of minutes in the song.
Moving past all of that I rather enjoyed Rye & Silence set, it took them into their third song before they found their groove and timing on stage, the first couple of songs the drums were a little off their mark. I wish I could remember the name of the third song that they played because this is the song that is going to get the band noticed. With one hell of a lead riff to start the song off and having the same riff appear throughout the song sounded great. The vocals were not too bad throughout the set I could probably have done without some of the commentary before a couple of the songs but it didn’t harm their set in anyway. Their guitarist wasn’t afraid to leave the stage at all since he was wearing a wireless pack he joined the audience a couple of times for a photo opportunity. One of my favourite moments of the set was when the drunken guy who was cheering all set long got his moment as he played air guitar with the guys at the front of the stage. It was a little unfortunate the way their set ended but again it was just one of those situations that just happen to come about.
Up next was Chris Koster with his new band Beginners Guide To Endings. I am kicking myself hard now for never making it to any of his previous shows. I mean he just blew me away by his new incarnation, now as a three piece band I couldn’t believe what I was watching throughout his set. He was more alive that I have ever seen him before, I’m pretty sure this was the first time that I have saw Chris jog and jump around on stage before. The new sound is pretty appeasing I think to most audiences it there are the classic 70’s rock three piece band sounds as in James Gang, and even expanding into a Led Zepplin sound. Even leaving all the guitars and drums behind you still get Chris’s amazing vocals, he doesn’t touch as much into the high notes as much as a few of his previous songs, but he still lets it all out a couple of times throughout the set which will catch you off guard if you are a first time listener. While still working on new songs and reworking a few of his older songs which he has written already he has a solid set made out. They even throw in a couple of covers including Personal Jesus and to end the night they played Misty Mountain Hop but way heavier. Chris makes up for only having three members a couple of times in the set by using a loop pedal but by not overdoing it throughout the set, the effect really made a stand on a couple of songs. Making up the rest of the band is Keith on Bass and Daniel on Drums and sometimes a special guest may appear. After Misty Mountain Hop finished I still wanted to hear more and more but it was already late enough into the evening.
This was the second time that I have watched Flash Lightnin’ play live in Kingston, and they blew away the stage once again. I will give them huge props for playing as many songs as they did and for how late they played into the night. Nearing the end of the night around two in the morning there was a lack of an audience but they still played as if the room was full of people. We got to hear most of their debut self titled album and a few extra gems thrown into the mix. Watching Darren put so much into every song was something that had to be seen with your own eyes. Every song had him showcasing what music should be down to basics no layering and with the basic amount of pedals required on stage. It took a couple of songs before Darren ventured away from behind his microphone but once he did he didn’t keep anything back as he stood front and center of the stage. Their timing was impeccable throughout their set, even when the songs got extended they pulled off jam after jam without a flaw. Everything you wanted to hear out of a three piece band Flash Lightnin’ put it out you want a little slide guitar no problem you want a drum solo no problem, a Darcy bass solo done. They played a well thought out mixture of heavy and heavier Rock N Roll songs. There were different bands which you could hear coming from their set just mentioning a few Led Zeppelin, The Faces, Rolling Stones. Darren’s vocals also go along with every song that they played, when the guitar had a dirtier/distorted sound Darren had the vocal power to create a raspy/rusty sound to go along with it. Hopefully the next time they pass through the night will be a full on three piece band night.