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PATCHES, JOE STICKLEY, DARK BLUE DARK GREEN
Saturday July 12, 2008 Mojo's, Columbia

As I write the notes of this review down we're at mid summer and it's beginning to show it. The sweltering heat, made worse by recent flood in the surrounding areas, has made people want to go out less. This, and my current situation of being one of the growing number of downsized/laid off/shit out of luck unemployed has left me more cooped up than usual. So when I heard of this show I knew I wanted to be there and not just because I had to get out of the house.

I'd never heard of Dark Blue Dark Green before their opening set and, given some of the hype I was getting from people I knew, I was slightly skeptical. Imagine my surprise as this trio played a set of post indie rock that's more akin to experimental jazz than in three chord rock. The drummer often doubles on guitar and the vocalist had a rhythmic style of phrasing that separates then for my expectation. Their songs have a vibe that hints of bands such as Mecca Normal at times. I hear they might have moved to L.A. by the time you read this (a move I hope doesn't crush the band). I wasn't expecting much from Dark Blue Dark Green but I was won over.

After a brief break it was time for Joe Stickley to take the stage. Joined by a collaborator named Mike (unfortunately I didn't get his last name; my apologies), they played a set of folk tinged country that walks a thin line between the music roots and leanings in alt country and blues. Using mandolin, acoustic guitars, kazoo, and a few other instruments, they were the most apt to hold the crowd's attention. Near the end they were joined by another person on mandolin, which added another flavor to the duo's guitar and slide work on those tracks. I admit that Joe Stickley and company's set was the one most people were at Mojo's to see. Fans of blues, rock , and alt country will likely enjoy his set.

Then it was time for something completely different - the first club show from Patches. The local musician collective (for lack of a better term) immediately kicked into action with a set of music taking in folk, country, blues, and pop to create dense, rootsy songs. Loud and textured, this octet shows that acoustic music can sometimes be as loud as a hard driving rock band. While the band did make some mistakes on stage (something I only learned later from the band themselves), there weren't any bad songs and the disparate styles blended well together. While they don't play out often (all eight people are in other bands and projects), they do make the best of the situation when they play.

Then it was over. People hung out for a while as the band loaded out and packed their vehicles. I went for breakfast and talked to some people afterwards. In a day or two it's back to the grind of trying to survive in this insane world. But for a night I had a release.
- Boone

UPDATE: Since the time of this show Patches has changed their name to The Cabin Sessions and currently play shows under that name

2008, Boone Stigall/The Trouble With Normal