NYC post-hardcore badasses Quicksand were in Dallas last night and put on one of the best shows of the year. Releasing two full-length albums in the 90’s before disbanding, Quicksand reunited in 2012 and have sporadically been playing shows ever since. Shortly after their current tour was announced, we learned a new album is slated for release on November 10. Based on what we witnessed last night, there’s much hope for Quicksand’s future.
Upon arrival, I couldn’t help but noticing the male-dominated crowd. There were dudes in shorts. Dudes with their baseball hats backwards. Dudes with the sleeves cut off their t-shirts. But, I did slowly begin to notice some diversity in the crowd. A lesbian couple, a hetero couple furiously finger-banging their phones, and of course enough vape smoke to choke an elephant. But, once the band kicked in to their first song, we were all one and I was able to stop being a judgmental asshole for over an hour.
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The band opened with at least 6 straight songs from their classic 1993 album, Slip, which had the crowd going off from the get-go. The bands energy was high, the crowd was singing along word-for-word, and any doubts about the band were quickly vanquished. All this and they were down a man. Performing as three-piece, the band wasn’t lacking a single thing. Standing close to stage left, their light show was at times blinding and I thought that maybe the 2nd guitarist was beyond my field of vision. Nope, they were playing as a three-piece and the sound was full and the performance was intense. Vocalist/guitarist Walter Schreifel danced, bounced around, and engaged the crowd with perfectly timed sing-a-longs. Bassist Sergio Vega and drummer Alan Cage were perfect on this evening. Vega, sporting a Trees hoodie, certainly made up for a lack of second guitarist with his thick bass tone and dynamic playing. And Cage quietly proved that his drumming is a huge part of the bands potent sound. The trio of musicians showed no signs of rust or evidence of going through the motions. They seemed every bit as inspired as they were 25 years ago.
The band went on to play tracks from 1995’s Manic Compression and a handful of new songs from their forthcoming album, Interiors. The crowd was at a near constant state of movement and the band clearly appreciated the response they received. Indeed, Schreifel and Vega had smiles plastered across their faces for the entirety of the set. It’s also worth noting that the new material sounded great. It was fresh, loud, and quintessentially Quicksand. Often when bands take a decade-plus hiatus, they return with something mediocre. But, they proved unequivocally that they can still deliver. What’s more, the new songs don’t seem to just pick up where they left off, but have their own original quality, demonstrating that they have all grown and developed as musicians and songwriters.
If you didn’t catch on to Quicksand in the 90’s, you now have the privilege to jump on the bandwagon for their second act. This is one seriously powerful band. They were razor-sharp last night and had the crowd in the palms of their hands. Grab their back catalog, pre-order their new album, and don’t miss them if they’re coming to your town.
– J. Kevin Lynch
Quicksand Tour Dates 2017
9/15 AUSTIN, TX @ MOHAWK
9/16 HOUSTON, TX @ WALTERS DOWNTOWN
9/17 NEW ORLEANS, LA @ ONE EYED JACKS
9/19 ATLANTA, GA @ MASQUERADE – HEAVEN
9/20 NASHVILLE, TN @ EXIT IN
9/21 CARBORO, NC @ CATS CRADLE
9/22 PHILADELPHIA, PA @ UNION TRANSFER
9/23 BOSTON, MA @ PARADISE ROCK CLUB
9/24 BUFFALO, NY @ TOWN ROOM
9/25 TORONTO, ON @ LEE’S PLACE
9/26 DETROIT, MI @ EL CLUB
9/27 CHICAGO, IL @ THALIA HALL
9/28 PITTSBURGH, PA @ MR. SMALLS THEATRE
9/29 WASHINGTON, DC @ BLACK CAT
9/30 NEW YORK, NY @ IRVING PLAZA
10/1 BROOKLYN, NY @ WARSAW
11/15 COLOGNE, DE @ LUXOR
11/16 HAMBURG, DE @ UEBEL & GEFARLICH
11/17 AMSTERDAM, NL @ MELWEG
11/19 BERLIN, DE @ SO36
11/20 MUNICH, DE @ STROM
11/21 MILAN, IT @ SANTERIA SOCIAL CLUB
11/22 ZURICH, CH @ DYNAMO
11/24 NOTTINGHAM, UK @ RESCUE ROOMS
11/25 MANCHESTER, UK @ SOUND CONTROL
11/26 LONDON, UK @ ISLINGTON ACADEMY