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The energy and attendance for BoomBox at the Orange Peel last Friday night was at capacity. I’m a fan of any type of dance music and when it comes to BoomBox’s genre, no complaints here. One couldn’t help but feel the groovy blend of beats and leads combined with bass and vocal delivery; ultimately creating a funky ‘get down’ dance party. The show opened with my personal favorite, “Mr. BoogieMan.” We settled into a spot towards the back center of the Orange Peel to fully soak in the dynamic duo.
The creative force behind BoomBox consists of long time friends: Russ Randolph, (DJ/ drum sequences, bass beats) and singer/ guitarist Zion Godchaux (son of Donna and Keith Godchaux, who performed with the Grateful Dead) Together, they seamlessly transfer and merge their signature electronica bass beats, and organic instrumental fabric and creatively weave between them; thus creating a perfect mellow, yet upbeat concert experience. Their sound is rooted firmly in the computerized world of contemporary, electronic dance music yet filled with elements of rock and funk mix. They have an echo effect of legendary musicians from Jerry Garcia, Bob Dylan and Otis Redding.
The whole crowd was feeling the smooth and psychedelic beat; smiling faces abounded and bodies swayed in a sequenced rhythmic motion. Zion’s expressionistic style- a white fuzzy hat, large sunglasses and alternating feathered boas, along with the colorful balance of lights, provided a constant array of dazzling visual effects. He spreads good energy and makes the fans happy which is an important ingredient when displaying their original, interactive, live performance style of music. The dueling instrumental riffs on stage were well intertwined creating a smooth balance of their exchange of leads throughout the show. I thoroughly enjoyedZion’s chill passion in his voice yet I wanted to hear more. Nevertheless, it kept the audience moving nonstop for 2 hours, leaving no pause for breath especially throughout the Grateful Dead cover of “Shakedown Street.”
Overall, the music was impressive. Their unique ability to keep the harmonic flow tight and simple allowed them to react and connect with the audience, delivering the fans a chance to release, to forget about the everyday grind and to just have a good time. There was literally a moment when I felt immersed in the music and was an active participant with this musical event. The songs, lights, being surrounded by good company, just took me away! Powered by subtle key changes and crescendos, culminating in a musical experience that you won’t find lacking. The crowd kept the energy moving full force through the night and the venue staff was on point as to be expected and as usual. All enjoyed the creative jams and the nonstop dancing. Good times were to be had! Cheers, Mr. Boogie Man!