Filed under: Scene Around Town | Tags: Concert Coverge, Scene Around Town, The Breakfast, Westcott Theater
For a late-night Friday dessert, The Breakfast served up over two and a half hours of music at The Westcott Theater. The band proved it has as much stamina as it does talent. The four virtuosos from New Haven, CT played a 20-minute encore where both songs had as much intensity as the show’s beginning. These guys work hard on stage and don’t get tired of it, and neither did last night’s crowd of about a hundred.
The Breakfast are a rock quartet known for their aggressive approach to rock, funk, hard rock, and psychedlic music. It all molds into one when the band leaves the framework of a song behind and embarks on improvisational journeys. This band has been playing together for over twelve years, and it shows in the way they communicate musically. They can change the feel quickly or build it up to a climax over time. All members are experienced in jazz, and they said that they focus on listening to each other during loose sections.
“Metropolis,” their opener, stopped the crowd’s cheerful chattering as the music crept up from a very low to medium volume. Guitarist Tim Palmieri picked reverb-drenched guitar lines which soared over the music. The song quickly went from a comfortable groove to an aggressive one, setting the tone for much of the night’s intense jams. The versatile Palmieri is able to pour his soul into whatever style he is playing. He can play smooth jazz over a slower vamp or fly his fingers through a number of metal licks in a matter of seconds. It depends on how the band is feeling at the moment.
Keyboard, synthesizer, and organ player Jordan Giangreco lays out thick and melodic textures. He can also unleash an arsenal of intriguing riffs and melodies. His styling shone great in the nearly 30-minute version of “Buquebus.” All night bassist Chris DeAngelis brought out his technically precise bass slapping and jazz riffing. He and drummer Adrian Tramontano are responsible for a lot of the band’s characteristic funk feel. The two brought back the hard funk during the set-closing “Existential Funk.” Tramontano contributes to band’s signature sound, as he’s able to follow his bandmates in any direction without dropping the time.
The Breakfast brought variety to the show. Late in the show they embarked in an atonal psychedelic jam. The crowd watched attentively, waiting for the music to resolve. The Breakfast would then go in and out of more dissonance before finally resolving and moving out of the trippy realm. They later treated the crowd to a rare cover of Skip James’ “I’m So Glad” (made famous by Cream in 1966). Then during “Grand Scheme of Things” they spontaneously went into a short interpolation of Pink Floyd’s “Breathe” from Dark Side of the Moon.
The entire show, two projectors displayed large psychedelic images that shined clearly against the Westcott Theater’s tan curtains. There colorful images of 3D orbs and stars, shapes that morphed, and pixelated boxes that change colors and size. Fans were able to dance with as much space as they needed. A few adorned capes. One woman twirled a light-up hula hoop to the beat of the music.
This is a band that you have to see to truely understand. There is so much mixed into their music someone could write a novela about it. Every show is different, and every song is played a little bit differently than the last time. Every show is an experiment.
After four shows here in Syracuse, The Breakfast have garnered a following of fans who are more than happy to come out on a chilly Friday night and stay on their feet for hours. All four members even stayed after to talk and have a drink with fans. And still, they didn’t appear tired from it all.
— Story by Gene Wexler
— Photos by Aaron Freeder