Posts tagged Taking Heads
Posts tagged Taking Heads
I’m just taking a moment to write a post about my amazing brother Jonny Vaughan and his fantastic band Triassic, consisting of Phoebe on drums, Chris on bass and Conner on electric guitar. Now, some people say I am biased – my brother is the frontman of the band and lead vocals – but below I am going to write an honest list of the reasons why I think they are such a great band.
1) They play good music. It’s as simple as that – the tunes are catchy, the lyrics contain meaning, depth, sometimes humour, a lot of cynicism and everything that good lyrical prose should have.
2) It’s original – this isn’t the ‘cover’ band you hear down in your local pub, playing the same three chords over again and droning into the microphone. Triassic are fresh, they’re talented and enthusiastic and they perform their own material which – although are rapidly becoming well-loved classics to their fans – are individual.
3) They take themselves seriously, but aren’t arrogant or stiff. Now this is an important quality, because it shows their diversity, the room they have for further improvement, and a maturity to take criticism and build on it. And whilst they are ready to banter with the crowd and have a laugh, the music comes first and is always top notch.
4) They have good stage presence. Right from the word go, whether it’s a rehearsed scrip or not, Triassic rise to the challenge and accept their role on a stage. They don’t look awkward, or out of place, but professional and engaging.
5) The drummers a girl. Well – I can’t sell the entire thing on this alone, but rather am impressed specifically not by Phoebe’s gender, but by her really unique skill. Unlike many student drummers, Phoebe sets a rhythm which is right for the song, rather than doing a fluster of showy pre-learned beats. Sometimes less is more, and in Phoebe’s case, self-taught as she is, this shows a real competence and dedication to music.
6) The lead guitarist has a charming way of going into his own world. Nothing says better music than if the musicians themselves can get caught up in it. And get caught up in it Conner does, demonstrating a serious passion for what he is playing and again really complimenting the whole band in the process. His guitar solos are exhilarating to say the least, and add an entirely new voice to the music.
7) You can hear the damn bass line. How many people can boast that? In most student, and some adults bands I’ve seen, the bass player is mostly there for decoration. We see him plucking and strumming, and just have to presume he’s playing something complimentary under the roar of the other instruments. But if Phoebe is the skeletal structure of his prehistoric dinosaur, then Chris is the muscles underneath. Powerful, rhythmic as well as audible and genuinely melodic, the bass is a colourful and active part of the ensemble.
8) They’re a band that likes Dinosaurs, and the front man wears Star Wars T-shirts to every gig. What more could you want?
9) No person claims more importance than the other. The last thing you want when you’re watching a performance is the awkward, soul-crushing sight of a power-struggle between two or more of the performers. Luckily Triassic don’t have to deal with this issue, as whilst each member has a distinct role, none claim importance over the other. Again, their focus is on the music and the performance, not who gets to show off the most.
10) Now once more, this may appear biased and even self-serving in one case, but the songs which Triassic perform are arranged and written (with a few exceptions) by them. And their repertoire to date goes largely to Jonathan who introduced his own work to the band to chew over and make something of. My brother is a clever, clever boy – infuriatingly so at times. I’ve never known a person to be so good with words, his construction of them and manipulation of meaning and sound is proportionately epic. Not to make his head swell, but his lyrics have meaning beyond ‘You’re beautiful’ ‘I love you’ ‘Let’s get smashed’ ‘Hoes and bitches’. They’re damn well approachable by people like you and me, about things we understand. And whilst the meanings of each song can be quite dark at times, the wit and the upbeat performance gives a sense of musical liberation rather than momentary angst. For lack of a better way to describe it, his work is genuine poetry – provocative of thought, but easily approachable, with great aesthetic value and a tune which’ll stick in your head.
I could continue singing their praises until I was blue in the face, and God knows I’m not doing it to give my brother anything else to inflate his enormous ego. I genuinely think this band is amazing and with all my heart I would recommend you check them out –
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