Royalphonic, Fire Dog, and Ayllu @ The Brick

This Friday, The Brick will host local soul jazz wanders Royalphonic, St. Louis pop rockers Fire Dog, and Kansas City’s own Latino traditionalists Ayllu. While each band occupies a different aesthetic space, they all find the sweet spot of technical proficiency and sloppy passion. These two elements come together in all three acts to make music that is as crisp as it is visceral–a quality that all but guarantees a fantastic show.

If one thing could be said about Fire Dog, it’s that the band is pure fun–sort of Scissor Sisters meets The Shins meets Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin. Fire Dog has ability to leak positivity at every moment in their music. But more than just an emotion, the St. Louis band backs their sugariness with instruments that are jangling and absolutely infectious. One listen to “You Don’t Know My Momma” and the tune will be stuck in your head for days, and their high energy music is certain to translate well to the stage.

Ayllu bounces between traditional South American folk songs and rock ballads. From covers of “Eleanor Rigby” to “Nukallajta,” from dueling percussion to plumbing bass, the band wills any piece of music into their style. While T.S. Eliot would argue the artist should be a pure catalyst, Ayllu plays devil’s advocate. In all their tunes, the band’s own sonic richness comes out–giving new depth and nuance to even the most traditional songs of their set list. Speaking of sets, the Kansas City band puts on a live show that is never short on intimate moments. Seeing Ayllu play is to witness a group of people doing what they love–a surefire way to have a great live show.

Royalphonic mixes elements of smooth jazz, funk, and soul to create a sound that is as Kansas City as the 18th and Vine District. Cool bass grooves rumble under heated sax lines. Subtle but maximally present percussion jitter under Erin Bopp’s stunning vocals. Whether Bopp is belting out lyrics or scatting, her silky voice stitches each track together–not that Royalphonic’s songs are disjointed. Each instrument lifts all it can throughout each song, giving each track a sonic lushness that not every quartet can pull off. And this sonic lushness never overpowers. Leads and rhythms interplay on record and stage alike. With a live sound that is full and layered, Royalphonic is not an act to miss.

This Friday’s show starts at 9pm and will be the perfect way to usher in the the weekend. Whether you want to hear the traditional grooves of Ayllu, the shining pop rock of Fire Dog, or the cool vibes of Royalphonic, The Brick will be the place to be.

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