With three weeks under their belts, The Chronicles finished up their residency at Red Square on January 30th with a great set of music honoring the late J Dilla as well as some of their own music. Starting the evening off was Ithaca’s Big Mean Sound Machine. The band stays true to their name, with everyone barely fitting on Red Square’s stage and blowing the audience away with music power that is seen so rarely. The funky numbers they played showcased each member’s talents flawlessly. The three person horn section was strong throughout the performance, leading most tunes along with the drums, bass, and congas. Both the guitars and the keyboards are used more as filler than as leads like they are in most bands. It gives the band a unique sound that should be enjoyable to everyone, and with a new album coming out in June, it is looking like a big year is coming for Big Mean Sound Machine.
The Chronicles came out after a short break and tore through a set that included guest JB for the J Dilla portion of the set. J Dilla is of course best known for the producing he did on many amazing hip hop tunes throughout the 90s until his death in 2006. JB flawlessly rapped over the music and clearly enjoyed helping The Chronicles out with this special show. “E=MC2”, “Stakes is High”, and “Fall in Love” were great highlights of the set. Jeff Nania, who mainly plays various saxophones, even took a turn at the mic during the evening. The Chronicles closed the night, and ran out in style with a one two punch of “Village Livin’” and “Mr. Clean.” This run let the band stretch their musical chops out to all regions of the music landscape and it suited the band well. Hopefully Albany will see another residency down the line.
Setlist: Time, Gobstopper, E=MC2, Move, Won’t Do, Stakes is High, Fall in Love>Think Twice>Fall in Love, Interzone, Just Knew, Strasbourg/St. Denis, Village Livin, Mr. Clean