Live Music Review //
Perennial / Minus Points / The Human Fund / wow, okay, cool
February 11th, 2023
@ The State House, New Haven CT

Additional photos can be found in a Facebook album here :::

Saturday night was the night to be at The State House and all four of these local bands are simply amazing.   I would've likely been at this show to see Perennial regardless of who was opening, but the way this line up turned out seemed to be some of the best and most fitting acts to give this such a well rounded show of different sounds yet all somewhat linked.

This show opened with wow, okay, cool who I've been listening to through Bandcamp for a while now.  The songs are fast, heavy and just feel like what Nine Inch Nails might've become had Trent Reznor stayed more towards "Pretty Hate Machine".   On some levels, this was the loudest set and it also felt the most in-your-face because of the distortion.  Everyone seemed to be bringing the energy at this show and this was the best possible way to light that fuse.

The Human Fund, a two piece of guitar and drums, were up next.  One of the weird things about me is that whenever I hear a band for the first time I always think of them in that way even if it's not really how they sound.  As an example, the first album I ever heard by Against Me! was "As the Eternal Cowboy" and as such always think of them as that.  I'm reminded of The Human Fund in this way because the punk rock songs start off with a few slow lines, almost like that dreamy Buddy Holly rock n roll, and then just kick in.

Throughout time there have been punk bands that haven done this whole "start off slow and kick it into fast gear" thing, but for some reason I always bring it back to Against Me!, that specific album and maybe even that specific time in music.   Still, The Human Fund has this raw sound which just fit in so well here and is just something to be heard in general.   It's not quite Tenacious D and it's not quite The White Stripes, but it's something you'll like if you're into punk.  

Minus Points felt like one of the bands on this show with the least amount of music out there to listen to in a recorded sense, but I've been following them on Instagram and so they post clips of their shows and they always look like so much fun.  There exists two different genres of music that Minus Points is somewhere between but they aren't between them like anyone else ever has been before.

On one hand, there is this sound like Coheed and Cambria or No Motiv, where you just feel like it's this rock or punk but closer to the pop side of things.  It's almost as if they leaned into it a little bit more one way they'd be like New Found Glory or a pop punk band with those clean breakdowns.   But then there is also this more hardcore side of the music, which leans towards metal, and it feels like Minus Points could be one of those punk bands that plays for melodies in the verses but screams in the chorus.  

While I realize a lot of bands have that screamo way about them, Minus Points just doesn't go full on with it like those bands do.  There are points when it sounds heavier and feels like screamo, but overall it's really more like that Boys Night Out album, "Make Yourself Sick", in that the screaming is there but not as much as back when every band was doing it.  It's also that ratio though of combining the screaming with metal, punk, rock and slight hints of pop, as it just really is a matter of mixing these ingredients to create a sound all their own.

Perennial was the headliner and it's tough to describe how they sound because they also utilize such a core group of sounds but present them in a different way than most bands.  One of the few bands which comes to mind right away is Kane Hodder but I don't know how many people know them as a band and not an actor.  With the keys, drums, guitar and two sets of vocals, Perennial seems to hit from all sides and sometimes all at once.  

Their music could be described as hardcore, but it's also got that art feel to it where you want to think of artists like Be Your Own  Pet.   But the overall energy is just so much fun because it makes you want to move.  It's that balance between listening to the songs and just wanting to dance in a happy but also in a hardcore way and whichever way you choose to go is probably based upon your mood at the time.  

The music of Perennial is just infectious and you can't listen to it without feeling something.  At one point towards the end of the set they encouraged us to all go home and do that one thing we always thought about doing but never actually went through and did.  For me, one thing I've always wanted to do but never did was made weird little sculptures (out of Sculpey and then paint them) and I've always felt like I'd be good at it but my Instagram followers might soon be looking at some just creatures that shouldn't be.  

Listening to music, especially live, always feels like such a treat to me.  When you can hear bands play and they all just feel like they could've headlined the show in the sense that they all bring something unique and meaningful to the show itself, it just makes the whole show better and I think we're fortunate now to be living in a time when that's possible.  I can't speak for every local music scene, but this makes me feel like Connecticut is doing well.  

The State House can be found on the interwebs here:

wow, okay, cool can be found on Bandcamp here:

The Human Fund can be found on Bandcamp here:

Minus Points can be found on Bandcamp here:

Perennial can be found on Bandcamp here:


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