Two things were made clear Friday night when Maybird commanded the stage at Three Heads Brewing. First, their time hitting the road playing gigs across the country has been paying off. Even in returning to Rochester, playing in front of friends, family and fans old and new, the band has shed that familiar ‘local band’ tarnish. It was still the same band, but tighter, more confident, boasting a more muscular full-bodied sound. The kind of bold sound that has been knocking out audiences far and wide.
Secondly, the band has not forgotten their roots in the midst of their blossoming success and discovery. They were clearly excited to be back on familiar turf, showing their love for Rochester continually throughout their 80 minute set. The oldie but goodie song “One Love” they claimed is played nowhere but Rochester, led one to believe that when lead singer Josh Netsky sang, “You are my one love,” he was talking about his native city. Guitarist Overhand Sam Snyder proudly recounted how it made people happy to hear they were from Rochester when they were out on the road. But just the simple, “It’s sweet to be back home,” uttered a few songs into the set made it quite clear.
From the building slinky psychedelia of “Maybird” to the tight big rock dueling guitar finish on “Turning Into Water,” the set was stacked with tracks from their two most recent EPs. But there were a few surprises as well. They dropped in a brand new tune “Don’t Keep Me Around” with synth-heavy grooves. A few covers were played, spanning the decades. They took on the 60’s with Brenda Lee’s “All Alone Am I,” payed tribute to early 80’s David Bowie with a perfectly funky “Ashes to Ashes” and brought it up to the last decade with a Rosewood Thieves cover, a song which Snyder had originally contributed to and one that their tour manager, Erick Jordan, had actually written. The show closed with a bombastic encore of “Call You Mine,” another older tune, the full sound bubbling over with Kurt Johnson on a ferocious electric lap steel.
The band is about to head back out for more touring, this time sharing the stage with fellow Rochester success story Joywave. If you can’t be home, might as well take a piece of it with you.
Setlist: Nocturne, Maybird, Ashes to Ashes (Bowie), Don’t Keep Me Around, All Alone Am I (Brenda Lee), Bluebird Flew Away, One Love, Grace, To the Stars, (Rosewood Thieves), Two Horizons, Keep in Line, Turning into Water
E: Call You Mine