LIVE REVIEW: Mates of State @ Great American Music Hall 6/30/2010
While the tour supporting Mates of State’s latest effortâ€”the Crushes Covers Mixtapeâ€”was a “multimedia” event including comedian Nick Thune and Jason Hammel’s post-show DJ set, I really just caught openers Free Energy and Mates themselves.
Free Energy set the bar pretty high with their set. As one of the “can’t miss” live sets of this year, they definitely delivered. Equipped with four part harmonies and dueling guitars, songs off their album, Stuck on Nothing, sounded about three times better than recorded. A stage performance not uncommon to old seventies rock bands with a lot of high kicks and drumstick twirlingâ€”there wasn’t a boring moment within the set.
You could not say the same thing about Mates of State. Free Energy was a hard act to follow, but considering Mates of State have quite a few years on them, their set was less than what was expected. People actually sat down to watch the couple who were backed by two additional musicians. Playing a slew of songs from the course of their catalog, thankfully not overloading it with new covers, everything just seemed to fall flat. Nothing stood out, AND nothing was extremely terrible. While Mates of State’s entire performance seemed to just be there, you could still tell the two are very in love with what they do.