Review: 2018-08-11 - The Lawn at White River & After Party at The Hi-Fi - Indianapolis, IN
Discoman last edited by Johnny Love
I want to start this review off by talking about the first venue for my 7th and 8th Spafford adventure. The Lawn at White River in Indianapolis is an open amphitheater with mainly a grass standing/seating area that is in the heart of downtown Indianapolis. It was the perfect setting for an evening filled with great music being delivered to us by Spafford and Umphrey’s McGee.
Spafford came out to a big, early crowd. Many of the people around me were seeing Spafford for their first time. I assured them they were in for a treat. As the openers, Spafford brought the heat with When It Falls to start their hour-long, four-song set.
Right into, what is becoming a classic, Ain’t That Wrong, to give the Spafford fans and new fans a taste of their musical prowess.
Another favorite of mine, All In, came in nicely as the sun was setting behind the stage and put Jordan’s vocals caressing across the lawn at White River. Red brought it with the keys on this one in the meat of the song along with Brian shredding on the guitar. Cam kept that tempo smooth and in the pocket.
To close the set they set off on America. A perfect song to get us Midwesteners dancing around around and ready for Umphrey’s set. My overall impression of this set was exactly what I expected: professionally sound and perfect for opening set and but a prelude of what was coming later at HI-FI!
After Party at The Hi-Fi:
This show had been sold out for weeks. You could feel the excitement and anticipation growing in the night while waiting in line to get in to the venue. As I walked through the door, the first thing I did was snag a @Jon-Rose print from the merch table, then found my spot in front of the stage between Brian and Jordan.
*Photo credit Aaron Bradley
They fellas came out to a resounding applause and atmosphere to a packed house.
Opening with a funky Funkadelic was a perfect way to continue that excitement from earlier. Right into Broken Wing> My Road. Red really slayed the keys on My Road along with his angelic vocals. They went on a spree of shredding this one out. I was in awe of the magic I was watching on stage. I couldn’t believe how tight these guys were. Their chemistry is off the charts! I’ve seen a lot of music and this is one of the VERY few times that I can remember where I was so excited from the first note to the last.
Leave The Light On was next and got EVERYONE singing back to the band. You could feel the room sending the energy back to the band which they feed off of really well. This was one of the best LTLO that I had seen. The way they brought it out of the main chorus and into a jam and back into the chorus and back out again.
Mad World, it’s a Maaaaaaad World, was up next (which I happened to call earlier in the day even!) I love their version of this Tears For Fears classic. Their spin on this instantly made it my favorite cover that they do. While every other song in the set is fast paced and shreds, this song, during the chorus anyway, slows it down for just the right amount of time to bring you back up again!
They ended the set with another Brian shred fest, The Postman. You can never go wrong with this pick as it is a favorite among just about everyone. Lots of jam and fast paced slaps from Jordan, Red on the keys tickled our ear buds with those highs, and Cam kept us grooving on the bottom end.
They encored with The Reprise. Probably my favorite of the whole evening and the cherry on top. Brian continued playing The Raven to remarkable speed and technicality. All-in-all, I feel that this set at The Hi-Fi in Indianapolis will go down as one of the best sets I have seen all year from any band.
Thank you, Brian Moss, for melting my face off multiple times.
*Photo credit Aaron Bradley
Special shout-out to Aaron Bradley for the incredible photos and to Mike Jacobson for the capturing video (link on the show page) of 3/4 of the opening set at The Lawn at White River. All you Nerds friggin rule!