Lincoln Hall – Chicago, IL
The only real way to describe Atlanta-based band, The Constellations. Grinding bass lines, filthy guitar riffs and a pair of sexy background vocalists make me want some biscuits to go with the smoky eight-piece in front of me.
Lincoln Hall is one of my favorite venues, but they were a little off this Friday. The band packed its instruments on the stage: drums and bongos, keyboards, and plenty of electric guitars. After kicking out the early birds so the band could sound check, the venue still couldn’t cope with the posse’s large sound. Lead singer Elijah Jones could barely be heard when the entire band was in full force. Outside of the occasional “ba ba ba”, I heard maybe two full songs. His vocals are similar to the Gorillaz in the fact that it’s half-sung, half-spoken. The group’s music is more than enough to make-up for a lack of vocals. The crowd was digging every note the band put out there, and they were especially hungry for that cowbell.
The group’s debut album, Southern Gothic, drops June 22nd. The band has described their sound as “a psychedelic soul-rock explosion” getting by with a little help from Cee-lo (of Gnarls Barkley), Asher Roth and Ben Allen, the producer of several hits like Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy” and Christina Aguliera’s “Here To Stay”. They are currently on tour with the Oregon-based Hockey, before and after their stint at SXSW in March.
The ring leader’s parting words: “I don’t know about you, but I’m drinking a s— ton of whiskey.”
Pick up a free download and give a listen to The Constellation’s cover of Tom Waits’ “Step Right Up”. I dare you not to dance.
Written by: Blake Russell