New Year’s Eve 2012 At Radio Bean
Words by Tim Lewis.
I woke up nice and early and worked an 8:30 to 5 shift then walked home and waited. Swale were due to go on at 8:30, and not knowing how crowded it would be, I wanted to get there a bit on the early side. I had mentioned the show to my friends, and Chris decided to go. He arrived around quarter of 8 and downtown we went. There were several people at Radio Bean, but it was nowhere near full. This made getting in and getting a beer super easy. We chatted a bit, as Swale slowly and steadily set up for the show. Just about 9pm they opened with a slow, steady Soft Fireworks, featuring Johnnie Day on the saw. It’s such a beautiful and smoldering song, and they played it to appropriate perfection. They brought the pace up a little with Dimedrop, then eased back with Middlesex. Again, Johnnie added some gorgeous shading to the song with her saw. Next they were going to bring up Tyler Bolles for a song, but things took a bit of time for him to get set up. They filled the space with a fast rocker, maybe called Jack Shaw. When Tyler was set up on bass, they rocked hard on Cancer, then followed with an elegant rendition of If you get Lost. Things kept rocking as they let loose a fun version of Edible. Next up, they slowed it down for Good Medicine, but the middle section rose and rose and Eric let loose an arena rock solo, before the song slowed for it’s ending. What more can you want in a rock and roll band? Another rocker followed, it was either called Gymnast, or Golden Crutch, with the audience voicing support for the latter. They wrapped the set with a hard fast rocker that I’ve heard them play several times, but don’t know the name of. The chorus was something about hanging out with the popular people, and had a killer Amanda keyboard riff.
When done, they said they were going to take the often mentioned karaoke sign up list and “another’ band would be back to play. Chris took off and Swale came back dressed in flannel, tukes, and super-fake black beards and mustaches. They were still joined by Tyler, who wore a white beard and mustache.
They opened hard and heavy with the mighty Joe Adler singing a super deep and rich version of I Wanna Be Sedated. Next up and older woman, named the Mighty Zook (?) belted out a stunning gospel tinged I’ve Got A Feeling. I always love discovering how much talent there is in our town. James Bellizia followed with a fun rendition of Ghostbusters. Next up, Lee Anderson did a weird and creepy and completely compelling version of I Put A Spell On You. It was tons of fun and had lots of maniacal laughter. Linda Bassick let loose her wonderful voice on a killer version of the Cure’s Just Like Heaven. Lily Sickles followed with a ferocious We’re Not Gonna Take it. She really had the hair for the song, and the voice. After, Amanda joked that they spent a little time learning the song, only to realize there really wasn’t much to learn. Heloise took the stage next for a pretty faithful Working For the Weekend, and Rufus T Superfly (?) followed by hanging out, looking cool, and dropping the one word lyric for Tequila, whenever needed. There was no guest for the next song, so Swale just unleashed Sabotage by themselves. In the only real karaoke song of the night, three girls got up to sing Closer to Fine. Eric prompted them throughout it, and it was pretty fun.
From there, my notes and memories started to get a bit blurry. Jason Cooley stepped in as clean-up man to sing for much of the rest of the evening. They did a bit of a fast, hard, Closer To Fine, then let loose Sweet Jane. If my poorly written notes are correct, Cooley followed with Roxanne, joined by Rufus. Next up, a couple of guys sang Where is My Mind, from the Pixies. Cooley returned to the stage with Bellizia for a brutal (You Gotta) Fight for your Right (To Party). The night wrapped with Abby Abby singing Fairytale Of New York, and that was it.
By the end, the crowd was pretty solid, and danced through most of the cover set. Everyone seemed to be having a great time. Once the music stopped, my energy dropped. I wandered to the back, found my coat, and took the short snowy walk home. It was definitely one of the best New Year’s Eves ever.
This post was originally published by Tim Lewis at his personal blog, https://timstriangletribune.wordpress.com.