April 20, 2024

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Concert review: Futurebirds – The “BirdFam” was out in force for the band’s recent show at Thalia Hall in Chicago! Video, Photos

In a world that often demands the categorization of musical tastes, it is refreshing to experience a band that is about the vibe, not the genre.

Blazing their own path of musical exploration, Futurebirds have spent their career painting outside the lines of any particular scene.

As singer/guitarist Carter King has explained, the band has always been “too indie rock for the jam festival, too country for the indie scene, [and] a little too psych-rock to feel… Americana.” Instead, the band has “created its own weird little ecosystem” that is “thriving” and “feels great.” It shows in their live performances.

There is a unique bond between the band and its fans. Rather than merely playing for the fans, the Futurebirds party with them as if fans and band are one. It is a relationship that has affectionately earned the band’s fans the moniker of “the BirdFam.” That family was out in force for the band’s recent show at Thalia Hall in Chicago.

The band – consisting of three singer-songwriter-guitarists (Carter King, Daniel Womack and Thomas Johnson), as well as a bassist (Brannen Miles), pedal steel player (Kiffy Myers), keyboardist (Spencer Thomas) and drummer (Tom Myers) – transformed Thalia Hall from a concert hall into a house party.  They played a set that covered songs from each of the band’s four studio albums – including the 2020 release, Teamwork, and the two most recent EPs, Bloomin’ (2021) and Bloomin’ Too (2022).

For nearly 90-minutes, the BirdFam floated and soared in constant rhythm within the band’s ecosystem, journeying across an over decade long catalogue of songs that included “Crazy Boys,” “Easier Said,” “Twentyseven,” “Buffet Days,” “Rodeo,” “Johnny Utah,” “Dig,” “College Try,” “Put Up, Keep Up,” “Trippin’” and “Yur Not Dead.”  The evening ended with the band’s touring mates, The Nude Party, for two epic jams: The Grateful Dead’s “Bertha” and The Rolling Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil.”

Regardless of which side of the fence you sit – too much or too little indie rock, jam, country, psych-rock or Americana – the categorization is irrelevant. Futurebirds are all of those and none of them. A band with its own sound. A sound best described as Futurebirds.

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