2/25/2017 – The Fillmore, Philadelphia, PA.
We set the scene: American four-piece rock outfit, Blame Candy takes the stage at The Fillmore in Philadelphia on Saturday, February 25th, to support The Griswolds on The Low Lives Tour. There is an air of uncertainty amidst the crowd as lead vocalist/guitarist Chris Greatti, guitarist/backup vocalist Aaron Deming, bassist Ryan Wheeler and drummer Sam Palombo step onstage decked out in glittery ensembles straight out of Mick Jagger’s closet, paired with eyeliner and an aura of confidence. One synchronized note hits— hard. Suddenly, it feels like 1973 and you’re blinded by glitter and taken aback by the rawness and loudness of it all. No backing tracks, no light shows, just talent.
As the unreleased track, “Everybody Knows!”, kicks into high gear donning a guitar driven groove paired with immaculately placed choreography— yes, choreography— the looks of uncertainty amongst the crowd wipe away all at once and the only thing that matters is the music. We move into “Pathetic”, an instant crowd favorite with more synchronized dance moves (yes) and stuck-in-your-head-all-damn-day lyrics. As Greatti kicks and spins around the stage with vigor, I wonder, “Why doesn’t every show feel this way?” These guys know what they’re doing, and they’re doing it well.
There are elements reminiscent of some of the greatest artists of all time sprinkled within their set that bring me to believe Blame Candy isn’t meant to be an opening band; the sensuality of Prince, the androgynous fashion and intrigue of David Bowie, the virtuosic musicianship and shock-factor of Led Zeppelin in ‘69. As the set continues with behind-the-head guitar solos and zealous crowd participation, the room becomes more and more immersed. Blame Candy’s electrifying musicality and showmanship never cease to impress. I’ve never experienced anything like their show before and it’s become deafeningly clear to me that they are the real deal.
Their brief 30 minutes onstage are spent in full force, performing originals from their first EP, EP1, including singles “Life Like You” and “When I Was Cool”, as well as rollicking and emotionally charged unreleased songs. There is a satirical edge to their music and performance that I struggle to describe. You’ve simply got to see it for yourself. What I can tell you is that amidst the simple synthetic pop music of 2017, Blame Candy’s brand of rock n’ roll feels like a breath of fresh air that is without question destined to make waves.