Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Streetlight Manifesto at Irving Plaza

Tomas Kalnocky of Streetlight Manifesto
Streetlight Manifesto came together as a collection of musicians who had previously played with ska punk bands Catch 22 and One Cool Guy in the New Brunswick area of New Jersey. Streetlight Manifesto released its debut album in 2003 and then played sold out shows at Rutgers University and the famed Stone Pony in Asbury Park. At present, the band’s fifth album, The Hands That Thieve, is unreleased due to a public dispute between the band and its record company over royalty payments. The band also announced that the present tour is its last, and will end it on November 15-16 at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, New Jersey. Streetlight Manifesto will continue to record independently but perform only on occasional dates.

Streetlight Manifesto’s current tour is called “The End of the Beginning.” The beginning of what? That is unknown, but it is the end of 10 years of constant touring. The tour stopped tonight at a sold-out Irving Plaza. Streetlight Manifesto delivered well as a brass band that mastered uptempo rock but with a specialty in third wave ska. Founder/vocalist Tomas Kalnoky led the songs with his voice and guitar, but it was the four-piece brass section that made the songs come alive. The set was comprised of music from the band’s 10-year history, including compositions from the as-yet-unreleased album, and a Bandits of the Acoustic Revolution cover, “What a Wonderful Life.” The ensemble played tightly enough to keep the songs powered and organized, yet loosely enough to let the horn players contribute freely. This was music at its liveliest, leading fans to dance the skank throughout the performance.

Visit Streetlight Manifesto at www.streetlightmanifesto.com.