Review and Photos by Andy ArgyrakisAfter being out of the spotlight for nearly five years and at the verge of breaking up more times than they can count, the members of Sense Field have cut through all their major label red tape and trudged on with an emotional blend of aggressive rock with introspective songwriting. At the core of their rejuvenation is the new project Tonight and Forever, a disc slated to come out on eight different occasions over the last five years. Instead of throwing in the towel, Sense Field went back to the drawing board to map out a new strategy each time and came out with a powerful outpouring of emotion and musical splendor.
Lead vocalist Jon Bunch and guitarist Chris Evenson took that chemistry and translated it into the live setting at the House of Blues Wednesday night in a special acoustic set as part of 101.9 FM The Mix's ongoing "After Five Live" series. The duo highlighted the majority of the new record, built around the smash hit "Save Yourself," with a few selections from their past catalogue, including cuts from their Building project. At times they made a direct connection with those who lined the club walls, while occasionally losing concertgoers' interest due to the watering down of some of their more intense selections.
Opening with the flavorful "Here Right Here" off their latest project, Bunch's crisp vocals and Evenson's lush strums succeeded in setting up the reflective mood of the set. Fellow new cuts "Emergency Exit" and "Beatles Song" soon followed, both taking on a more melodic feel than the record with the chance for the vocals to come across distortion free.
But it was the stripping down of the robust "Fun Never Ends" and the usually string soaked "Save Yourself" which proved to be less effective during the show. Both tunes are known for having a more amplified and orchestral sound, but seemed to get lost amidst audience chatter in the unplugged setting. Speaking of dialogue, other than introducing a song or two, Bunch didn't have too much to say. He almost seemed a bit shy during his brief points of spoken word interaction, perhaps because of the subdued environment.
Nonetheless, Sense Field rebounded for the rousing finale "Are You Okay," known for its tongue-in-cheek recollection of surviving several late drunken nights with subsequent hangovers. Bunch playfully sang "Remember nights when our friends had to carry us home/ Remember times when we'd wake up in places we didn't know/ Their was always a light on for us always guiding us all to help find our way home."
Despite a few missteps, Sense Field must be applauded for their perseverance in finally recording and releasing Tonight and Forever, along with getting back on the road to build up their fan base from the ground up. Although the taste of victory must be sweet for the band, the fact that the disc weaves clever themes with enjoyable sounds is a big fat cherry on top for fans.
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