Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Dreamscapes Project Rocked Arlene's

The Dreamscapes Project: October 17 @ Arlene's Grocery, New York, NY

12-strings, cellos, buckets, spoons and questionable art books, oh my! What? That doesn't make sense to you? Then you weren't at Arlene's on Saturday watching The Dreamscapes Project.

This was the first time I had the opportunity to catch the band, Keith Center (Lead Vocals / 12-String Acoustic Guitar), Ben Guy (Cello / Vocals), Jeremy Rodgers (Electric Bass), Gordon Shankman (Drums) and Eric Sanford (Percussion). For those who haven't had the experience, they're a revved up folk rock band.

The Dreamscapes Project have made my list of bands to see live. Sure, they're good on record, but, you really have to see them live to get the full picture. They kind of take a no holds barred approach which leaves the audience smiling and dancing. Yes, dancing. You can dance to a folk band folks. One of my favorite songs of the night was a little tune called "Bluegrass." It was indeed a bluegrass song and where Sanford's bucket and spoon playing came in. Only in New York (or maybe it's just only when The Dreamscapes Project are in New York) can you find a folk band, in a rock club, playing bluegrass while a couple of guys have a little hoedown in the audience.

I have to mention "Why Do I Always Feel Like The Sound A Chair Makes As It's Dragged Across The Floor?" if for no other reason then for the amazingly long title it carries. Did I get the full title right?! So, they played Chair Song (sorry Keith!) which, by the way, is a really good song, after Center expressed his chagrin, amid good natured ribbing from his band mates, over the song title being whacked down to just Chair Song.

One of the things that first intrigued me when this band was brought to my attention was the fact that they have a cello player. When I first heard this, my first thought was, 'oh he probably just plays it on a few songs.' But, that's not the case. Guy wields his cello the entire show and quite frankly, rocks out with it. Center, an unassuming frontman, has some soul in his vocals. He has a good voice and the sound person did a bang up job in making sure it was heard properly.

I bet you're wondering where the questionable art book part comes into play, huh? Well, set a band loose in NYC with some time to kill and they'll happen upon a crackhead (or some sort of questionable person) selling self-drawn art books which led to a bit of a show and tell. Their version of support the arts?

They closed the show with a rousing cover of Dirty Vegas' "Days Go By." It's a perfect song to end with yet, it's also a bad song to end with. Perfect in the fact that it leaves you pumped up full of rock show adrenalin. Bad because that same rock show adrenalin it leaves you with, makes you want a few more songs! But all good things must come to an end. I had a good time and look forward to seeing them again. Go check them out when they play near you. You'll have fun ... might even yell yee-haw!

"Days Go By"


"Still Love"

Set List
  • Still Love
  • Why Do I Always Feel Like The Sound A Chair Makes As It's Dragged Across The Floor?
  • Bluegrass
  • Titanic
  • Fragile
  • Days Go By