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I guess I just like liking things

A week ago this past Saturday I went to a concert at a local venue I didn’t even know existed until I heard about the concert. I hadn’t heard either group before, either, though I had heard of them. Here are a few thoughts on the concert.

The Shake Ups in Ponyville

From what I can piece together, The Shake Ups have been around a while and have played in some cool places. The Shake Ups in Ponyville are a side-project of the band that is a collection of songs about/inspired by My Little Pony.

The Shake Ups in Ponyville

The Shake Ups in Ponyville

This group was the reason I went. I Internet-know one of the members, and he’s a neat dude, so I wanted to see his band perform. (As it turned out, I also knew the drummer ever so slightly, having met him through a mutual friend a few years back.) I know very, very little about My Little Pony and its fandom, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was able to catch Lee before the show and ask, “What do I need to know about My Little Pony before hearing you guys?” “All you need to know,” he replied, “is that ‘Friendship Is Magic’.”

While I can’t speak to how the music ties into and expands on the themes from the show, I can say that the music was all kinds of enjoyable. The band members were very clearly excited to play their music, and that excitement gave the concert a lively and fun atmosphere. Each member of the band had at least some bits of Pony-inspired costume pieces and they go by names like Twi-fi Sparklecaster, Professor Savvyshy, and Rari-Lee (which reminded me a lot of KISS, weirdly enough).

I have a great deal of lyrics deafness in general, but it’s much worse in live music situations, so I couldn’t really tell what most of the songs were about. What I could gather was that the Ponies go on adventures together and there are bad guys and they all live in a Equestria. My favorite songs were “Power Pony Up!,” “Welcome to the Herd,” and “Dr. Whooves,” and I think it speaks to the quality of the music that I was able to enjoy it without knowing any backstory or being able to hear the lyrics.  I did end up buying a CD, the Pony Power Pop album, and it has two of those three songs on it. I listened to “Power Pony Up!” on repeat in the car for quite a while.

Check out The Shake Ups on their website or on Facebook.

Five Year Mission

Five Year Mission’s mission is to write (at least) one song about every episode of Star Trek: The Original Series.

Five Year Mission

Five Year Mission

Now Star Trek is a thing I know a little about. I still didn’t know what to expect from a band inspired by Star Trek, but at least I had some background to work with.

These guys were energetic as all get out, too. I can’t sit here and explain all the different musical influences on display or anything, but I can tell you they were a lot of fun to listen to, and that’s the important thing, right? My lyrics deafness still held for these guys, but I was able to work out enough to be able to tell which episode they were singing about and to recognize some lines from those episodes.

My favorite songs were a couple about Spock’s Brain (the episode, not the brain), and those are apparently on an album that’s being released this summer. I gathered that the whole album is going to be inspired by that episode, rather than having several different episodes represented on one album like their main albums. I did end up buying the Year Three album and have been enjoying that. They also performed the Bilbo Baggins song (that Leonard Nimoy made famous) as a tribute, and it was great.

The band members all wore Starfleet shirts and I particularly enjoyed the green crossover-style shirt that Patrick wore, as that digs into the Star Trek lore a bit. About halfway through there show I wondered if the red shirt Andy (the drummer) was wearing was a sly reference to Spinal Tap (because the Spinal Tap drummers kept mysteriously dying), but when I asked him after the show he was quick to point out the stripes on his sleeve, which meant he was also wearing a Command uniform. Ah, well.

Check out Five Year Mission on their website and on Facebook.


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