High energy and good humor characterized the evening of Saturday September 5 at Funk ‘n Waffles Downtown as Albany-based Mister F and Syracuse group Vaporeyes dished out mystical reverberations of sonic opulence. Mister F, featuring Matt Pickering (Mr. M) on drums/samples/vocals, Scott Hannay (Mr. S) on keyboards/vocals/vocoder, Ben Pickering (Mr. B) on bass/vocals and Andrew Chamberlaine (Mr. A) on guitar/vocals, channeled a Particle-esque vibe, while displaying plenty of original character for the audience.
After an energetic performance of “Machine,” Pickering announced sarcastically, “that song’s not about robot voices at all.” Hannay quickly followed up, speaking purposefully into the mic in a distinctly altered voice, “no, not about robot voices at all…” Although the band freely jokes around on stage, they take their actual musicianship quite seriously. Pickering frequently spices up his intricate drum beats with clever pauses and commanding breakout jams.
After finishing an impressive jam halfway through their set, Hannay walked over to Pickering, momentarily commandeering a drumstick to serve as a bottle opener before immediately returning to his post and fluidly sliding into the next jam. At it’s conclusion Pickering called out to the crowd, “We’re Mr. F, give it up for beer!” Members from Vaporeyes scattered amongst the unfortunately sparse crowd, including bassist Shannon Zory and his girlfriend who had plenty of dance room to face each other and playfully weave their heads back and forth in a snake-like fashion, clearly enjoying the music.
Vaporeyes, composed of notably younger musicians than Mister F, certainly held their own on stage. With a slightly muddier, grungier sound, Jonas Reddy-Nicholson playing keys/synths, Shannon Zory slappin’ bass guitar, Sean “Chid Law” Cadley on drums, Jamie “Jyms” Tynan on guitar and Stephanie Donato playing saxophone delivered a string of equally dance-worthy tunes to listeners. As the evening progressed, the musicians called out to the crowd, “Is it still Saturday?” There were in fact ten more minutes before midnight, so they opted to play a number aptly titled “Saturday Song.” It carried a lighter, more ambient sound than some of their heavier jams and incorporated more prominent synth effects.
Throughout the evening, Zory’s gilfriend mingled with the other bandmates’ girlfriends and snapped photos of the band’s performance, occasionally gesturing with a victory fist pump reminiscent of a golfer making a hole-in-one. The close-knit flock of dedicated followers supporting the members of Vaporeyes makes watching the band more gratifying, knowing their musical endeavors are supported by the ones they love.