The Budos Band Nearly Renders the Song Superfluous, Keeps the Beat Fresh...For Now


The Budos Band


Sunday, February 19

Staten Island cool guys The Budos Band sold out Neumos last night (I know because my poor, stupid friend Brian couldn't get a last minute ticket), and played their seventies-recalling spice to a T. Performing as a nine piece this night (drummer Brian Profilio announced at one point that their second trumpeter was temporarily incarcerated), their sound was deep and even, and sounded something like record-quality (it doesn't hurt that they record live to tape). The vibe was wicked; dancing was general.

They played songs from their albums in an orderly fashion, yet at some point during their set, I wondered how different the night would have been if the four-member percussion section had simply nuanced their usual [tasty] beat and let the other members solo over the top like maniacs for hours on end. I, for one, would have happily listened/danced. The thought made me examine my attachment to their written songs, and come to the conclusion that, like a different-tooled Ratatat, they've found their sweet spot--their "sound"--and can basically do no wrong within those parameters. As long as Daniel Foder delivered those eerie bass hooks, I was on cloud nine.

Between premiering a new song called "Seizure" and busting out perhaps their most identifiable jam from 2010's III, "Black Venom", I had to let on that they are capable--perhaps underrated--songwriters, which sometimes gets lost in the groove, but like Ratatat, or any beat-driven band with a distinct sound (and no vocals), they might have to shake things up to avoid getting stale. Everything to this point has been audio gold for the brothers Budos, and they've reached a crux in their career between their third and forth albums (it took Ratatat what, three albums to begin to wear their formula thin?), so it'll be interesting to see how or if they decide to shake things up ("Seizure" sounded melody-rich and promising, by the way). Shit, I'll listen to their next album regardless, but another instrument in the mix or some experimental rhythms wouldn't hurt.

To sum things up: The Budos Band gang showed off their talent-packed roster; their songs grounded the performance enough to keep things focused; and their current sound remained fresh. We'll see what comes next.

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