Ben Kweller, Sam Roberts Band and Hymns, in combination created a musically diverse yet entertaining night no matter who you were there to see at the 9:30 Club.
The North Carolina boys of Hymns opened the night with their new so-called California twang. Followed by the Canadians of Sam Roberts Band who set the mood with their stoned soul sound with songs from their latest album, Chemical City. And the highlight of the night for the young fans that packed the 9:30 Club was Ben Kweller. He’s been around for years traveling the world and developing a following with his unique sounds in albums such as Freak Out…It’s Ben Kweller, Sha Sha and On My Way. Check the bands out online and at myspace.com for a taste of their music, and if they wet your appetite I’m sure they’ll be coming back soon to a venue near you!
F. Jeffrey Duesel, DC Scene Contributor
The paring of Sam Roberts with Ben Kweller is like an education in Rock and Roll. One could almost liken the back to back acts as if Pink Floyd, or Led Zepplin were to open for Todd Rundgren. The unexpected surprise is that the differing musical styles of Kweller and Roberts end up complimenting one another nicely. The predominantly young Kweller fan gains exposre to music that is largly unheard of in the glam-rock scene, of the United States, while the dark smokey-bar fan of Sam Roberts have a chance to see the younger, perhaps somewhat pop-ier but equally inspired music that is available to them.
Scott Merrill, DC Scene Contributor Sam Roberts and the Hymes opened for Ben Kweller. The Hymes were pretty good. I've never heard them before and was pleased with their performance. The Sam Roberts Band is the main reason why I love Canadian rock bands. Our writers and Sam Roberts Band Their musical talent shined through by opening with their latest hit "The Gate." Most of the music they preformed was from their new album, "Chemical City" with a few hits from their first CD, "We Were Born in a Flame." Although the set was short, it was definitely sweet and left me wanting to hear more.
Any live music lover would have enjoyed this Ben Kweller show. It was the perfect blend of instruments with a little more accent on the piano. Although he never verbally mentioned it, you could tell by the way he danced around the stage that he was happy to play at what has been rumored to be his most favorite venue in the US. A lot of his songs had a distinct Gil Norton touch to them, especially "Wasted & Ready."