The parking lot was not packed full of 50s, 60s and various other elite autos as it had been in previous years but the die-hards came out to support all that Twin Cities Rockabilly stands for. The crowd inside slowly sipped PBRs as the music hyped the inner sanctum allowing for a day of fiery sounds intertwined with romper stomper styles to engage in a yearly day to celebrate the Minneapolis rockabilly scene.
Some of the band-list changed throughout the day, some canceling and new additions being added. But all of the musical mayhem ran smoothly and kept the audience charged and waiting for another track to take them to the next level.
One local powerhouse took control of the stage and let everyone know it with a barrage of technique. The Violent Shifters growled their way into the souls of each greased gear-head, Mohawk-ed urban warrior and puzzled by-standard. Front-man Justin Slingsby uses a vocal changer to subdue the audience with addictive horror and Erik Johnson pounded the ‘skins’ with a heart palpitating flavor not to mention the rest of the ensemble adding the perfect amount of musical angel dust to rev the audience. Each track enlightened the last and the garage styled punk mixed with rockabilly quintessence related to everyone in the house. From elderly to diaper clad youngsters, everyone could feel the obedient sounds of The Violent Shifters.
But the night was not over after the Minneapolis locals played. Joplin, Missouri’s own Brutally Frank headlined the day of rockabilly poise. Bringing an uncompromising format to the stage, this three-piece of musical discharge brought fans and on-lookers to the dance floor to smash, bash and bop to each upright bass slap. With the presence of ultra bad-ass drummer Mell, who used her core values to hype the crowd, the band stimulated the evening allowing for all to wander into the abyss of the passing rain clouds after the show ended.
The third edition of the Black Mass Car Show was not packed wall-to-wall, but for those who witnessed the musical seduction they will surely be back for more in 2011.
By: Kaleb Bronson