April 4, 2009 at the Middle East in Boston, Mass.
by Leyla Hamedi,
You think it’s easy to get girls interested in music? Guess again. Though admittedly easier (no, not in that way) than guys, girls still have some high standards that a band has to meet before they pass muster. In Sins of America’s case, it took about 10 minutes. And they also got a couple guys too.
Sins of America kicked off the show with, “Don’t Bite the Hand That Feeds You,” a fast-paced rock anthem that screeches into being with racing guitars and pounding drums. Like the bastard child of Backyard Babies and Ratt (if both bands had also dallied with Bowie and let’s face it, everyone has, or wants to dally, with David Bowie) Sins of America don’t so much as pair, but smash sleaze punk and glam rock together with not only their sound, but their looks too. Although they didn’t have much of an audience early on, but Miss Platinum in the short skirt was spotted eyeing them.
Without a pause, they then went into their classic, “She Said She Wouldn’t.” With its catchy chorus and stubborn beat it’s exactly the kind of song that makes you take notice. To their credit, they actually did get noticed as the various members of the audience actually left the bar and came to watch.
A quick introduction of the next song, “Girl Like You,” and a dedication to all the girls in the audience, settled it. There was actual movement. Not dancing per se, but the kind of tapping, moving your shoulders to the beat thing people do when they want to dance but would feel stupid actually doing it because they’d be the only ones. You’ve passed Sins of America and judging by the well-dressed man that was standing pretty close to the stage enthusiastically nodding along; you’ve won his approval too.
After, “Already Leaving,” and, “Let The Good Times Roll,” two more equally catchy songs, the band went into one of their sure-thing hits with, “One More Shot.” With its Pretty Boy Floyd lyrics and slower beat, it’s the perfect song to slightly, mind you slightly, slow things down for a breather. Except, Boston being Boston, misunderstood the title to mean actually doing shots instead of giving someone one more shot to get it right, but you know, enthusiasm is enthusiasm. And they didn’t seem to mind when they finally figured it out.
Not ones to keep it slow though, “Own Best Enemy,” with it’s, “Whooooa” chorus introduced the punkier aspect of the Sins’ but the dueting guitars and their hair metal squeals bring back the rock as well as lead singer Rob Wylde (who probably wants to rub it in Bret Micheals’ face that his hair is not made by the best wig-makers in Europe and that the bandanna he’s wearing is for show rather than hiding tell-tale weave tracks) and bassist Evan Deane’s harmonizing vocals as they strike the classic heads-tilted-back-crooning-into-the-microphone pose. Not ones to stray from good old rock’n’roll stand-bys, they also bounced around on stage, gave each other time in the spotlight, and showed off their very own guitarist, “with mystique.” Chris Kelley didn’t contribute much to the banter but kept the show going with his don’t give a damn intros. Interestingly, the sweatier he got the more like Keith Richards he looked. Just added to the image.
Drummer Shawn Vincent seemed to have the most fun when the band went into their version of Joan Jett’s “I Hate Myself For Loving You.” With its decisive beats and chanting chorus, they delivered an especially energetic version of the song even though audience participation was not quite what it could’ve been. To be fair, Boston has a fairly high tolerance for alcohol and no one will get them dancing in public until copious amounts have been consumed and it was still pretty early on in the evening.
The last song, “Finish What Ya Started,” delivered much of the same fast-paced rock’n’roll party pop Sins of America are fast getting known for, and though their introduction was merely lackluster, they were seen off with enthusiastic cheering and whistles. No comment from Miss Platinum Blonde as yet.
Don’t Bite the Hand That Feeds You
She Said She Wouldn’t
Girl Like You
Let The Good Times Roll
One More Shot
Own Best Enemy
Can’t Take It Back
I Hate Myself For Loving You
Finish What Ya Started