Review and Photos by Matt SchwenkeIn support of their second studio release entitled Sideshow, the Twinemen came to Shank Hall with their collection of sounds and entertained the crowd with exotic rock oddities. The new material on display from the Twinemen is more driving, ventures even further into their strange blend of sound, and is more focused in interesting song structure.
Self-described as "sax driven rock," or jokingly "Christian fuck-rock," the Twinemen are certainly unique. And, if the band Morphine comes to mind, it should-- both saxophonist Dana Colley and drummer Billy Conway were part of that band with the late great Mark Sandman. Though the music is naturally comparable, there is a certain mood that singer and guitarist Laurie Sargeant creates that is far different from Morphine. This was evident in the song "Spinner," a powerful rock tune that Sargeant helped fuel, and in the song "Twilight," a rather soothing number where Sargeant's voice shone.
There is still, however, the unmistakable sax and drums sound of Morphine in the Twinemen, and the set even included interesting versions of "Eleven O'Clock" and "You Look Like Rain" from the Morphine album Like Swimming. But, it's where they expand from the Morphine sound that is the most interesting. "The Definition of Truth" and "Wishers," both from the new album, have a burning-down-the-walls blues sound that stirred the crowd. While Colley added in harmonica, bass clarinet, and saxes to the songs, Conway played in a rock groove with a jazz discipline, in that every beat had a purpose in the songs. With newcomer Jeremy Curtis fitting in well on the bass, the Twinemen reached into the dark and pulled out some curiously creative sounds.
The Twinemen are a band forever tied with the memory of Mark Sandman and Morphine. But with these roots, they have become masters of mood and are continuing to explore and grow musically.
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