This week, the Amsterdam Bar and Hall hosted three diverse, engaging acts: vintage rocker Micky James, the stoner drone of Welles, and all-female punk band the Regrettes. It was an entertaining night of dancing, singing, and fun.
Oh, Micky, You’re so Fine!
Opener Micky James can be described in four words: suede, sass, sparkles, and spunk.
He brought the charisma and charm that you hope for in an opening band, energetically prancing across the entire stage and interacting with the crowd. Most members of the band wore suede shirts, with Micky in a dazzling leather jacket, and the set was filled with dramatic pauses and catchy melodies.
Although there were maybe 40 people in the audience during their set, he performed as if there were 40,000,000, his Freddie Mercury-inspired vibe provoking quite a bit of movement from the audience. His ability to draw eager participation from a crowd largely unfamiliar with his work was quite an accomplishment.
All’s Welles that Ends Welles
Since Micky James had set the bar so high with his upbeat set, I was nervous that the more mellow tones of Welles might be a letdown to the crowd. The crowd enjoyed them, though. It was clear after only a few seconds of their set that they were stoned out of their minds. Though maybe not entirely professional, it definitely added a warming level of authenticity to their grungey garage band feel.
Although I’m pretty sure that frontman Jesse Wells spent most of the night trying to figure out where he was and how he got there, it was still pretty entertaining.
Seriously, this guy was tweaking hard. His twitchy eyes, limp thumbs-up between songs, and puns about donuts gave off a major Totally Kyle vibe. That being said, it created a very friendly and welcoming kind of space.
Their music was fine, but I was drawn more to their mannerisms. They didn’t seem to take the band too seriously, almost poking fun at themselves with mild-monotoned sarcasm and lighthearted fun.
“You guys like rock n’ roll?”
“Cool! This song is called rock n’ roll!”
The crowd responded positively, continuing to listen and watch intently, taking each moment in. Ultimately, they made for a good transition between the theatrical pop of Micky James and the gritty, in-your-face punk anthems of The Regrettes.
I Think I Love You (But then I Think YES Way)
The Regrettes are a badass, female-fronted punk group brimming with sass and confidence. Their set was explosive from the start, belting out the words (with harmonies) to “California Friends.” The rest of their set was equally ferocious.
At one point, frontwoman Lydia Night asked audience members to start a circle pit. It seemed odd for their style of music. Eventually it made more sense, as a little later on she called for yet another circle pit, only this one was exclusively for women. The move was bold, innovative, and just plain exciting.
Each of the Regrettes is only about eighteen, making the sophistication of their sound, lyrics, and demeanor even more impressive. I’m confident that their high-quality, in-your-face punk will find a large audience sooner rather than later.
Stay updated on what The Regrettes are doing here.