The Disco Biscuits kicked off the third and final night of their run at The Capitol Theatre with “Help On The Way” > “Slipknot” > “Franklin’s Tower”, paying homage to The Grateful Dead and their history at the iconic venue. Guitarist Jon “the Barber” Gutwillig rocked a tie-dye and played a custom Languedoc—on loan from the Soul Monde guys—for the second night in a row.
Ever since Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart joined the band at Red Rocks in 2015, there has been an undeniable connection between the Biscuits and The Dead. In his book, Deal: My Three Decades of Drumming, Dreams, and Drugs with The Grateful Dead, Kreutzmann said that bands like the Disco Biscuits are keeping the spirit of The Dead alive in today’s scene of jam bands. As the Biscuits continue to grow—as individuals and as a band—their approach to jamming has transitioned into a more patient and mature style. It’s an idealistic cross between improvisational rock n’ roll and livetronica. Using space to their advantage, they’re able to capture the attention of live music enthusiasts both young and old. Last night was a prime example of that, and it’s only going to continue to evolve.
Out of “Help > Slip > Franklin’s”, they jammed into “Spraypaint Victory”, then closed the segment with “Sound 1”. The “Shem-Rah Boo” > “Cyclone” > “Spraypaint” that followed to round out the first set was easily one of the best segments of the run. They hit their stride in a way that was cohesive and purposeful. They were listening to each other and keeping things simple, adding layers of sonic texture without stepping on each other’s toes. Drummer Allen Aucoin and bassist Marc Brownstein provided a sturdy canvas for Barber and keyboardist Aron Magner to illustrate melodies upon. Seeing them seamlessly jam into “Cyclone” was especially memorable, as they had complete control of the crowd and used dynamics to their ultimate advantage. It was as if they couldn’t miss, and the way they slid into the ending of “Spraypaint” was as flawless as it gets. They ended the first set with triumphant conviction, their passion and love for the music radiating from the stage.
When the band walked onstage for the second set, the applause was electrifying. They dropped into “Voices Insane” with complete confidence. Wasting no time, they soared into an inverted “Shelby Rose” with glorious gracefulness. Once they hit the jam, they took the crowd for a ride with a smooth groove that was both invigorated and meaningful. Barber was switching guitars on the fly, from his custom green Stratocaster to his classic Gibson hollow body, and then to his new cream Stratocaster which he purchased at the end of 2018. The transition into the ending of “Voices Insane” was truly impressive.
Next came “Little Shimmy in a Conga Line”, one of their most classic songs. From there, they went into “Humuhumunukunukuapua’a”, one of Brownstein’s best songs, then they jammed into one of his newer songs, “Miracles”. Since its debut, the song has produced some great improvisation—first at the Ogden Theater in 2017 and now at the Capitol Theatre, which is a good sign for fans of this band that want them to write new songs. The ending of “Little Shimmy in a Conga Line” is one of the best ways to close out a set—fierce and powerful. The crowd erupted as they hit the final notes with sheer dominance. From the rail to the rafters, the energy was otherworldly.
The Disco Biscuits’ three-night run at The Capitol Theatre capped off a monumental run of shows that stretched from October to February. The Disco Biscuits have cracked the code. They have found out what works for them, and it shows in a manner that is unmistakably positive. All four of the band’s members are connecting in a way that is wise while still remaining youthful. At this rate, the Disco Biscuits aren’t going anywhere, so whether you love them or hate them, you cannot deny their impact and contributions to the world of live music. They are bridging the gap of yesteryear and tomorrow with laser-like focus and true love for one thing, and one thing only: the music. Long live the Disco Biscuits.
Below, you can watch a full, pro-shot video of The Disco Biscuits’ last of three performances at The Cap:
The Disco Biscuits – The Capitol Theatre – 2/2/19 – Full Pro-Shot Video
[Video: The Disco Biscuits]
Next up for The Disco Biscuits is a two-night stand in New Orleans during Jazz Fest on April 26th and 27th. For more information, head to the band’s website.
Setlist: The Disco Biscuits | The Capitol Theatre | Port Chester, NY | 2/2/19
I: Help on the Way-> Slipknot!-> Franklin’s Tower-> Spraypaint Victory-> Sound 1, Shem-Rah Boo-> Cyclone-> Spraypaint Victory
II: Voices Insane-> Shelby Rose (inverted)-> Voices Insane, Little Shimmy in a Conga Line-> Humuhumunukunukuapua’a-> Miracles-> Little Shimmy in a Conga Line