Prawn/Hands On The Stereo @ Maxwell’s

HOBOKEN, NJ—I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a rainy Sunday than by catching a show at Maxwell’s. The first band to play was Boyhood Is A Summer Sun, a quartet with an experimental post-rock sound. The band’s set was fairly short but what it lacked in length, it made up for in talent. Their sound brought a sense of calm to the venue, yet their music had subtle energetic qualities that were enough to get the crowd moving a bit. The song “Discordant” was probably my favorite from their set because of the booming drums and passion-fueled vocals.

The next band was Massachusetts’ Herra Terra. Their setup seemed fairly complicated with the amount of keyboards and synths they had as well as the wires that came with them. The drum kit was placed on the side of the stage instead of directly in the center, which provided a fresh look. After the band’s lengthy setup, the house lights went out and the stage erupted in a swirl of colors followed by the sound of electronic power rock. Herra Terra impressed those in attendance with their catchy, futuristic sound. The only complaint that was made after their set was that some couldn’t understand the vocals over the other instruments.

Playing their first show back from tour, Hands On The Stereo proved to be a crowd favorite once again. The band blended together songs off of their latest release, Teamwork Makes The Dream Work, as well as some songs from their self-titled debut EP. With their catchy sound that leaves one humming their tunes for days, it was interesting to see the band slow things down for the semi-sweet love song, “’Til Death Do Us Part.” Though mellow for the most part, the tune exploded into loud ‘la da di das,’ which the crowd eagerly sang along to. The quintet performed their single, “Into It, Over It,” which threw the energy through the roof with most of the audience screaming along with the band.

That night, Prawn’s two-month tour was coming to an end. The four-piece began to set up while friends and family crowded the stage. From the first note the crowd went crazy for Prawn. Old favorites such as “Nightmares” were mixed with songs off of their full-length, You Can Just Leave It All, to provide a satisfying combination. The stage was ambushed several times by friends while others were tossed around in the crowd. The band even played a brand new instrumental song that mellowed things out for a bit. However, that all changed when the final song of the evening came around. The second vocalist/guitarist Tony Clark opened his mouth and screamed the first two words of “Arctic Foxes,” and the venue turned into total chaos. The type one would expect from a song that so many love and adore. By the time the tune was over, you couldn’t see any of the four members of the band through the crowd of people onstage. How’s that for a welcome home?