Pulling up to my house in their touring van with nothing but smiles, Wild Adriatic took me in for a day in the life in Upstate New York. We headed up the Northway to a Red Robin in Clifton Park to enjoy lunch and talk about their tour that just finished up. A wild week in Texas, New Orleans, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania had just ended, and Mateo Vosganian, Rich Derbyshine, and Travis Gray had stories to share from the road. From a night or two of smaller crowds to sing-a-longs in the car to a stop off in Maryland at an open mic that proved to be a great night of music for the band, they had plenty of stories to tell over burgers and fries.
Pulling into Charles R. Wood Festival Space for Rocktoberfest in Lake George, the sounds of AM Bodega could be heard over the speakers. As the band unloaded the van and set up shop, AM Bodega were playing a solid set of music including some nice jams and a good take on Led Zeppelin’s “No Quarter”. When it was time for Wild Adriatic to take the stage, the audience, although not large, all came close to the stage to watch the band take over for an hour and a half. Despite the tour and the long drives, the bands energy on stage was tremendous. Travis’s voice was in fine form, belting out his signatures wails and hitting every note. Rich was bouncing and dancing all around the stage non-stop throughout the set. Finally Mateo was hitting his drums with all his might and even at times was shaking the stage he was going so hard.
The set saw more covers than I am used to seeing from the band, but since they had a long set to play, they delved deep into their repertoire and busted out “Mary Jane’s Last Dance” by Tom Petty and “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk. Both were done beautifully, as was expected when upon the opening riffs. When the three of them decided to play covers, they do so as close to the original as they can. Travis was in a talkative mood as well from the stage, happy to be home seeing familiar faces after being on tour. The band was also very comfortable with one another on stage letting themselves get lost in a ten minute rendition of “Mess Around”. Having been touring so extensively lately the band has acquired this jamming skill to add to their live show and it suits them great. Locking into the song, they moved through three separate phases in their jam and brought it all back home, returning to the chorus of the song to close out the set.
After the set and packing up their gear, Wild Adriatic hung out, signed merchandise and talked with fans. As Black Mountain Symphony started up their country-rock, the van was finally packed up and we drove back down the Northway to Albany for the night show and tour capper at The Hollow Bar. The night’s setlist was written and the radio was on loud as we headed down the road listening to Joe Walsh, Mountain, and Led Zeppelin. Another load in and another soundcheck later, everyone was hanging in the basement of The Hollow when Titanics came down to hang out as well after finishing up their own soundcheck. Soon Party Boat was also down there waiting for the show to start, and three bands from Upstate New York were all trading touring stories and having a good time. Another meal was eaten at The Hollow with more stories from the road before Party Boat started the show. Their garage and surf infused rock was a great start to the evening. The laid back vibe won the crowd over with jokes and new music from the Albany band and are definitely worth catching the next time they are on the bill at a show.
Titanics came on next after a short break and the duo played a great set of indie-rock music. The music turned spacey at times, which was great to see. The blend of loops, keys, guitar, and vocals had the crowd take notice to not sleep on them either. With new music just out recently, these guys are really starting to become a local Albany fixture with bigger things to come. Taking the stage for the second time of the day, Wild Adriatic stormed on with “Lonely” and the crowd responded with dancing and chanting and singing the song right back at them. Some more left field covers for the band happened in The Darkness’s “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” and MGMT’s “Electric Feel”, and both went over great with the crowd. I was amazed at how much energy Travis, Mateo, and Rich all still had from earlier in the day. Everything sounded and looked as if it was their first performance of the day. Wild Adriatic are road warriors and just want to be on stage all of the time. The packed house at The Hollow gave just enough room for everyone to dance and have a good time. There was some more jamming from the band as well, showing the Albany crowd that touring gets a band tighter and lets the songs shine even more than you remember from the last time you saw them.
Closing down the tour with Led Zeppelin’s “Rock And Roll” was a perfect tour-capper. Smiles, hugs, and drinks were shared among all the familiar local faces after the show was over. Wild Adriatic loves to remind audiences they are from Upstate New York and like to keep everything done with the “family” they have built up here. It was no coincidence that the last shows they are playing before heading to Europe are in the Capital Region of New York. The band has a lot to look forward to coming up really soon, but they also like to take a second and enjoy the moment. The Hollow provided them with a home town show to celebrate how great this year has been to them and they will be playing one more night at the venue before going abroad. That night is Halloween evening and the band is planning some great things for night. Be sure to get there for the fun that is going to take place and wish them safe travels before they head onto a plane across the Atlantic to conquer some new territory.