Lettuce's show last night at Revolution Live was a tour de force or, more accurately, a tour de funk.
Band members are masters of their craft, presenting a sonic tightness and denseness that reached near magical levels. Lettuce kept the crowd rapt on a long, funky ride the entire night. Even though the group was fresh off the weeklong Jam Cruise, Lettuce sounded crisper than ever.
It was a damp, slightly windy Sunday night, normal for winter in South Florida. The cool air was likely welcomed by those who'd spent the week on the high seas. The crowd included a lot of attendees from out of state getting one last bit of music in before boarding planes and heading home. Weary sun-burnt feet shuffled while fresh-footed South Floridians tore up the dance floor.
Break Science took the stage first, demonstrating its superiority in an age saturated with producer/drummer duos. The group blasts everyone else away with its varied electronic supershow. Drummer Adam Deitch (also the drummer for Lettuce... don't know how he does it) is a powerhouse who did things that no computer can. I'm confident that if there were a War Games scenario with a top-of-the-line drum machine, Deitch would be our Matthew Broderick. Producer Borahm is no slouch either. He was constantly guiding the songs into really thick, neat textures, perfectly blending all the different EDM styles they attacked. From dubstep to deep house, the two hit them all out of the park.
At 11, Lettuce came out and blasted the audience with a heavy dose of funk. Starting strong with a personal favorite, "Madison Square," it instantly had the entire crowd, young and old, dancing as hard as their bodies would allow. It was just a swirl of flailing arms and smiling, happy faces. The show continued with some of the richest funk jams I've ever experienced. Deitch, like I said before, is just amazing. He kept an intense pace through two sets with two different bands, and with vigor.
Charismatic Erick "Jesus" Coomes on bass is also so much fun to watch onstage. His mannerisms, voice, presence, and skill offer such a great combination; it's hard not to focus on him and what he does. Guitarists Eric Krasno (also of Soulive) and Adam Smirnoff complement each other so well that it's crazy, with both guitarists getting time to shine.
A highlight of the show was an amazing heartfelt solo from Krasno that kind of stopped everyone from swirling and got them to focus on the stage. They ended up boogeying again once it finished. Another nice midset surprise was an appearance from the wickedly talented Alecia Chakour. She delivered some beautiful soulful vocals that had people swooning. It was a sweet little break the funk fest.
There was unique horn work from Benny Bloom and Ryan Zoidis, who held it down the whole night. Zoidis did some awesome sax-manipulation stuff that took the jams into weird, amazing places. And you can't forget madman Neal Evans (also of Soulive) on keys, who tore up the stage left and right. It's hard to imagine those keys don't get worn out daily given the voracity with which he plays.
And if all that weren't enough, for the encore, drummer Nikki Glaspie (Nth Power, formerly of Dumpstaphunk) had a guest appearance. She took Deitch's place on the drum kit and helped end the night with more furious dancing. When the lights went out, all around us were tired, happy faces, joyfully rejuvenated by the funk.
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