Even though Houndmouth will be coming to Forecastle (and playing a late day, stage closing set) we couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to see the local guys at a regional hot spot. Beaver jumped at the opportunity to take us to his old hood, Bloomington, for a show at the legendary Bluebird.
The space itself wasn’t ideal for the show initially, mainly because of the insane turnout. It was really, really packed. Like, Beaver had never in his life seen the club that full. The proximity to home meant a lot of hometown family and friends were able to attend, so ultimately none of this surprised me. I’m not entirely sure what capacity is, but I can guarantee this crowd was as that number. It was a fun spot nevertheless, and with 25¢ beers on Wednesdays, I could see what this is a college kid favorite. Or a grown people favorite, I guess.
For the several hundred in attendance, we got a first real look at how the group plans to move forward in the post-Katie Toupin era. Several songs were rearranged to better fit their voices and the new supa-tight horn section. AND, even more excitingly, we got the scoop on a handful of new songs…that we can only assume will be out in the public for us to hear soon.
The new stuff is hugely different from the Americana roots feel of their past two albums. The horns are highlighted throughout, but it is the use of synth (in keys and percussion) that give the new songs a retro feel. All three of us made Vampire Weekend references, actually. Although it strays from what we know and love, I think the new groove will grow on Houndmouth fans. Their talent remains, and the new stuff is very well done, even though it is super different from what we’ve grown accustomed to. They just released their first new single in a few years, “This Party” and although it may take a minute to adjust to the change, I think I’ll come to love their new personality. I hope they can still produce high energy, yet emotive songs that I can’t help but sing along to… and don’t get too damn poppy.
They’ve just extended their summer tour into June and July, including the aforementioned prime time Forecastle slot. I 100% recommend seeing them at some point if you can – their live shows are hard to beat and we always have a good effing time.
See ya in July, Houndmouth.