HONEYCUTsmall.jpg

Honeycut

Date:  April 18, 2007

Venue:  The Showbox

 

I must admit, things were looking pretty dire at the Showbox for the Bay Area electro-funk/soul/rock/R&B/etc.

"/>

Last Night: Honeycut at the Showbox

Cali band brings the funk on a slow Wednesday night

HONEYCUTsmall.jpg

Honeycut

Date:  April 18, 2007

Venue:  The Showbox

 

I must admit, things were looking pretty dire at the Showbox for the Bay Area electro-funk/soul/rock/R&B/etc. quartet Honeycut, which plies its trade on Quannum Projects (the label founded and run by DJ Shadow, Blackalicious, et al.).  Granted, it was a Wednesday night, Honeycut was the opening act (for the Greyboy Allstars), and they're practical unknowns in these parts, having only played one show in town previously, but in the minutes before showtime, literally the only person on the floor of the Showbox besides myself was some guy dancing in the darkness to Dread Zeppelin's cover of "Freebird" which was playing on the PA system.  Yikes.

Thankfully, after just a number or two, Honeycut's sound and high-energy stage antics coaxed a few dozen people from the side bar onto the floor, and as the band wrapped up their eight-song, 40-minute set, there were close to 100 people dancing and applauding -- not too shabby.  Creamy voiced soulman Bart Davenport  -- whose presence seemed to me a cross between Mick Jagger and the Stone Roses' Ian Brown -- worked the room like he was at Wembley or Coachella, gesticulating wildly, twirling his scarf around, prancing and leaping about the stage, doing the one-foot-on-the-monitor-lean-and-point move. Meanwhile, astounding French-born keyboardist RV Salters (who's played with Blackalicious, Lifesavas, and his own General Elektriks) jammed on his occasionally wah-pedal-enhanced vintage instruments like Bernie Worrell, simultaneously dancing maniacally like Bez from the Happy Mondays. 


Rounded out by a drum machinist/sampler wizard (who played all the MPC beats live) and a supercool, rooted-to-his-spot bassist, the foursome cranked out songs from its recent Quannum debut, The Day I Turned to Glass -- the title track, which opened the proceedings, exuded a dark, slinky groove, coming off like Pulp, Primal Scream, or Kasabian fronted by an old-school Motown crooner.  Other tunes had a more laid-back, '70s West Coast soul vibe, including a cover of Shuggie Otis's "Strawberry Letter 23" (which Davenport introduced by saying, "This is a song written by a guy who went to my high school ... 20 years before me.")  Honeycut closed with a burning cover of the Honeydrippers' "Impeach the President," leaving the small but enthusiastic crowd wanting more.  Fortunately, you can get more -- the band's back in town next Tuesday, April 24th at El Corazon, opening for Cornelius.

 
comments powered by Disqus

Friends to Follow