Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Radkey at the Studio at Webster Hall

Three brothers were homeschooled in a modest pink house in St. Joseph, Missouri. Oldest brother Dee started playing bass in a local band; his younger brothers watched in awe and decided they wanted to play instruments as well. Garage punk rock trio Radkey was born in 2010, when the three brothers decided to sleep in the same bedroom so they could turn the other bedroom into a rehearsal space. Radkey is comprised of guitarist/vocalist Dee Radke, bassist Isaiah Radke and drummer Solomon Radke. After their hobby began to look like a career, their father quit his job as a loss-prevention officer at a big-box store to become Radkey's full-time manager. Radkey's debut album, Dark Black Makeup, was released in 2015 and will be reissued with bonus tracks as Delicious Rock Noise on November 11, 2016.

Radkey started when all the musicians were in their teens. They are not yet all of legal age to drink alcohol, but the band's current tour consists of rock bars, including the Studio at Webster Hall tonight. Maybe it is because of the freedom that comes with youth away from home, but the band's music was fierce and rocked with abandon. Dee's baritone vocals were deep and dark and his guitar leads were jam packed with energizing runs. The three's stage dynamics were so enthusiastic that Isaiah cut his face while playing at floor level and wound up bleeding from above his left eyebrow. Subject matter in their songs still reflect youthful concerns, however, like horror and, well, the band concluded the show with a cover of the theme song to the Teen Titans animated television series. It may be a while before older audiences are willing to take Radkey seriously, but Radkey is a refreshing take on grungy punk ethos.

Visit Radkey at www.radkey.net.