Kansas City’s 96.5 the Buzz and Rock the Vote recently teamed up to put on a special Rock the Vote event to get Kansas and Missouri voters registered, inform them about local politicians’ stance on the issues and to provide some great musical entertainment.
Politicians from both states were given a few minutes to speak in between performances by the bands. For a full list of politicians in attendance look here. I was more so interested in the bands, so I’ll be brief about the political stuff.
Some were better than others. There was a crazy libertarian who was all about the legalization of pot and an adorable, elderly Missourian named Dennis Moore who performed “This Land is Your Land.” Oh, and the biggest news of the day was that presidential candidate John McCain was staying at a hotel (The President Hotel, funnily enough), which was only a block away and he happened to have a free schedule that day.
Discovering this turn of events, those in charge of the concert gave information about the event to the hotel’s front desk and attached information to his bus. Alas, he was a no-show. Pity, too, because he really could have used the opportunity to reach out to the younger voters, especially when said voters live in a swing state like Missouri. Not wise, McCain, not wise. But enough about politics and on to the real reason you would check a music site: the music!
3:15-3:50 // The Belated
The Belated, a local Kansas City band, started off the show with a rocking set that showed them to be one of the better KC groups and sadly one of the more underrated ones. They even had the added draw that one of the sponsoring radio station’s DJs, Jason Ulanet, is a member of the band. Despite the quality rock present in their set, the audience didn’t give the band the warm reception they deserved. Regrettably, I believe the early set time left them with a smaller audience than what was present for the other bands when they easily deserved to have a crowd as large as the headliners.
4:30-5:10 // Waiting For Signal
Waiting For Signal was the other local musical representation. They had a harder sound than the other bands present and would have been better at an event for brother radio station, 98.9 The Rock, instead of 96.5 The Buzz. As much as I love seeing local bands supporting national acts at an event like this, Waiting For Signal seemed out of place…and this was not in a stand out, this-band-is-so-interesting-and-unique, way.
5:45-6:30 // Wombats
Liverpoolians The Wombats aren’t American and probably don’t really care too much about getting American voters registered, however, I am so glad this group was at this event because they stole the show. The threesome started off with an endearing a capella rendition of “Tales of Girls, Boys & Marsupials” and jumped right into a set filled with fun numbers that had people dancing to more than just their current single, “Let’s Dance to Joy Divison.” The band also kept the audience interested with more than just their tunes, but with fun stage banter as well. About midway through their set they took notice of a large screen that people were sending text messages to and the group started to make witty comments about the texts, saying things like, “George Bush doesn’t like Wombats, eh? Well the feeling is mutual.”
Tales of Girls, Boys & Marsupials
Kill the Director
Lost in the Post
Party in a Forest (Where’s Laura?)
Here Comes the Anxiety
Moving to New York
Patricia the Stripper
Little Miss Pipedream
Let’s Dance to Joy Division
Backfire at the Disco
7:15-8:00 // Carolina Liar
I’m so over Carolina Liar, especially their overplayed unimaginative radio single “I’m Not Over.” Maybe if they weren’t so pitchy I could forgive this group getting such a prime set time and give them a better review, but I guess asking for correct intonation is too much to ask. They keyboardist came close to redeeming the band with some interesting riffs that were very Cure-esque.
8:50-9:40 // Ludo
St. Louis group Ludo headlined the event and they got really into the Rock the Vote theme of the night, constantly asking the audience if they felt they were rocking the vote and also declaring, “Ludo is America!” A bold claim.
Their set featured many of their more quirky tunes “Love Me Dead,” “In Space” and “Lake Pontchartrain,” but still had a nice balance of sweeter songs like “Topeka,” which turned out to be a real crowd-pleaser, especially because there were some Topekans in the audience. I have to give this band credit for being one of the more entertaining stage shows I have seen in awhile. Lead singer Andrew Volpe had hilarious facial expressions and gestures. I am pretty sure the guy was doing the splits for a majority of the set. I especially could not stop laughing when the band covered Faith No More‘s “Epic.” I would recommend checking them out live just to see what Volpe does on stage.
Written by: Bethany
Photos by: Joshua
Filed under: concerts | Tagged: 96.5 The Buzz, andrew volpe, Carolina Liar, concerts, Dennis Moore, faith no more, George Bush, Jason Ulanet, john mccain, rock the vote, the Belated, The Cure, The Wombats, Waiting For Signal |