May 2, 2013 at Wild Boar Coffee, Fort Collins
What do you get when you combine half of the band Free Range Pickins with the talents of Wolf Van Elfmand and Luke Callen? They call themselves Von Stomper, and these 5 lads have the talent and energy to be the next big music group from Colorado. 4 out of the 5 fellows in this band are able to carry lead vocals, each with a distinctive style, and they harmonize well too, enough to sound great even in the noise of a small crowded space like this nearly standing-room-only basement of Wild Boar Coffee House. This band might well be what the Beatles would have sounded like, actually, had they grown up in Fort Collins during the past couple decades, though few bands have anyone with a voice quite like that of Wolf Van Elfmand. Ok, maybe not exactly the Beatles, but you never know. Take away the psychotically dangerous mobs of screaming teenage girls and put the Beatles in a music scene where they can play a few feet from the dancing crowd, and they might have turned out a lot like Von Stomper, though probably still all in bowl-cut hair and suit-jackets.
The Black Mountain Ramble showcases so far this year have featured lots of fantastic local talent, setting a higher bar for future shows each month. Over the past few months we’ve seen solo sets from Wolf Van Elfmand and Luke Callen, and last month we had a rare solo guitar set from Mark Austin, aka “Rooster, as he had only recently suffered the loss of his beloved banjo and harmonicas. (He seems much happier now that he has a banjo in his hands again, and a few harmonicas standing ready.) We have of course seen quite a few other artists here as well, including Brooke Reisse, Spencer Pelton and Eric Bjella. No doubt next month, on the first Thursday of June, there will be another great line-up of music here, too.
Tonight’s show started out with a great line-up, with Robin Lewis, also of Free Range Pickins, opening the night, followed by a blues set by the uber-talented Jordan Twiggs. Robin sang a great set of mostly originals, and including a slow cover of “I’ll Fly Away” and a few of her other better known tunes. Jordan introduced his new electric guitar, which he seems very proud of. His blues guitar made a great segue from Robin’s lighter folk-style into the craziness of Von Stomper.
Oh, and BTW, If you missed Von Stomper tonight, you can catch them at Crankenstein at 9pm next Saturday, May 11th, at 9pm (no cover, 21+).