Monday, August 6, 2012

Boise: Fall in Love With Edward Romeo and Kick Out Grand Falconer

Posted By on Mon, Aug 6, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Edward Romeo onstage at Neurolux.
  • Josh Gross
  • Edward Romeo performs on-stage at Neurolux.

It's time to kick Grand Falconer out of town. Its set at Neurolux with Utah's The Mighty Sequoyah Aug. 4 was as smooth as ever, despite having a ringer on drums.

But it's the same set the band has been playing for some time now, which is putting Grand Falconer at risk of plateauing. Yes, there was a rapt audience singing songs back toward the stage and superfans shouting out its lyrics, but how long can that go on? The band's songs are catchy and anthemic enough to put it at severe risk of being Boise's next break-out band, but the group needs to first break out of Boise's gravity in order to take it to the next level. I propose local promoters refuse to book Grand Falconer until they receive a postcard from the road and a cellphone video of the band playing a new song it wrote in the van. It's for the greater good.

Also on the bill was Edward Romeo, who is tragically uncelebrated. He dresses up simple blues and folk songs with lightning-fast finger picking and percussive strumming patterns. But instead of the requisite Dobro steel-stringed resonator guitar, he plays a diminutive nylon-string. It changes the tone and feel of the tunes from hard-luck tales to stories of wonder and intrigue. Especially with Romeo's voice, which is an alto-hum that almost sounds like that of a child, both in tone and in wonder. Even in a crowded and noisy rock club, it drew listeners in at the end of the show.

Watching Romeo's set, it was easy to feel like you were seeing an old-style folk singer who wasn't "discovered" for many decades, but plugged away in obscurity. Romeo is like a young Baby Gramps, if such a thing ever existed.

Let's just hope Boise falls in love with him in less than four decades.

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