REVIEW: The Cerny Brothers and Breach the Summit (2/28/14)

What makes this concert review a little awkward is that this text is going to be about the opening bands instead of the headliner, Max and the Moon. It’s always a bit strange when the first two bands absolutely win your heart over before the main act gets to perform.

The show was held in the Constellation Room at The Observatory. The Constellation room itself is a tiny venue (compared to the average performance space), and was a great new experience for me. The space was so small and intimate, and I got to stand directly in front of the stage to fall in love with the music right in front of me.

The Cerny Brothers performed first. The stage was already set up and I saw a banjo, harmonica, and cello on stage; they won my folk lovin’ soul over before they even started playing. By the third song in, I found myself following their beats, and stomping with their stomps. “All I need” was the third song they played with Scott Cerny (vocals and guitar) introducing the harmonica and Robert Cerny (lead vocals and banjo) really displaying the intricacy of banjo plucking. Before they performed their finale, they slowed their pace down with “Ohio”, which not only gave the audience a break from dancing, but also gave the audience a chance to really get to know the band and understand the mid-western routes that they come from. In the end, they quickly picked up the pace with their song “Whiskey”, asking their audience to clap along with them. At the very end of the song, the accelerando in pace got so fast in tempo that the audience couldn’t even keep up. The Cerny Brothers ended at the peak of their energy, leaving the audience pumped and ready for more.

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Breach the Summit entered the stage with a completely different vibe. Their more indie-pop sound lit up the stage during sound check before their set even started. The sound they produce is similar to modern and fun indie bands like Young the Giant and Walk the Moon, but watching this band live is what sets them apart from the others. The band started their set slowly with “I Get Lost”, letting a little soft vulnerability show for their audience to connect with. Right after, they were ready for their audience to be engaged in the passion they perform with. After the first song, the lead singer left the ukulele he was playing and met his main instrument: the drums. What sets Breach the Summit apart from the other indie-pop bands is the fact that their lead singer, Olen Kittelsen, is also the drummer. It’s a phenomenal site to see done so perfectly and passionately well. Not only is it a difficult task for Olen, but also hard for the other band members as well to maintain the chemistry among each other as they perform. They did a beautiful job throughout their performance and began the rest of their set with, “We All”, (which is my favorite song) and introduced the high-energy and perfectly solid that they create with their music. They ended the set with “You Don’t Know” and “Not to Blame” which really allowed Jacob Berger (guitar) and Kody Buxton (bass) to create a more rock-sounding vibe that allowed the audience to engage in a little more head-banging than in their previous songs. This band is full of surprises, and I can’t wait to see what more they have in store.

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The intimacy and closeness of this venue really allowed the audience to familiarize themselves these up-and-coming bands. We got to relate to their hometowns and feel the absolute gratitude they had after every song they played. I’ll definitely be following these bands along their journey, and I’ll surely be taking more trips to the Constellation Room to find more artists whom I can musically confide in.

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