There’s nothing more energizing to an audience member than watching the performers have a genuinely fun and enjoyable time on stage. If the band members are jumping around having a blast, frankly, you feel kind of like a moron if you just continue to stand still.
That being said, the Turf Club was an electrifying place on Tuesday night when New Orleans based rhythmic soul/R&B group Tank and the Bangas came through on their ‘Green Balloon Tour!’
It’s sort of hard to pinpoint just exactly what Tank and the Bangas are, but one thing they certainly are not is stale. Even their band bio is a blast to read:
“Tank and The Bangas were formed in 2011 at an open mic set in New Orleans, centered at a shotgun house, Jerk Chicken Sam’iches and a drum set. Instantaneously this group knew that they had something that stirred crowds that cried out for original music from them.
If you’re from New Orleans, you know all the ingredients to make a good gumbo. Your seasonings have to mix well, your roux has to be thick, and your meat has to be cut to perfection. Tank and The Bangas are what you call a great gumbo!”
While I admit I don’t know what it takes to make a good gumbo, I do know a great performance when I see it, and the show on Tuesday was just as lively as their major-label debut, Green Balloon, which was released earlier this year, and maybe even more so.
With ten touring band members gracing the stage (including two saxophone players, two keyboardists, and two backup vocalists, as well as a reappearance from opener Pell for a few songs), the stage was literally overflowing with ecstasy, and it was difficult to determine where the stage stopped and the crowd began, giving the show a bit of a punk rock vibe I didn’t really expect.
The band ran through the majority of their Green Balloon album, oftentimes adding extended “jam” sessions onto the end of each song, which ended up being my favorite portion of the entire night. Each member of the band is incredibly talented, and those two saxophone players I mentioned before were truly amazing.
The performances of the two songs I am most familiar with, “Spaceships” and “Smoke.Netflix.Chill,” were both monumentally entertaining, each including a little bit of flavor added in for their live editions that differed from the album cuts.
It was a very fun way to spend a Tuesday night and the fact that the show was bumped down from First Avenue’s Mainroom to the Turf Club possibly only made it more enjoyable. I have no qualms about saying that this group will certainly be selling out venues in the Twin Cities for years to come, including the Mainroom before too long.