Mister Adams w/ Amigo, Marcella & Her Lovers

at The Hi-Tone Cafe

Time: 8:00pm     Day: Monday     Ages: 18+ Ages     Price: $8
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ardly anyone has it easy these days. If you’re lucky enough to have a job, you work too much for much too little, and you wind up holding on to even less. Lovers and family should make things better, but they can take as much as they give. After all you have to deal with, you sure could use a friend. Then again, friends have their own pressures and expectations. What you need is someone understanding but not demanding, who knows the burdens you bear and only wants to lift your spirit because of that bond. That’s not a friend. That’s Amigo.

Amigo is here for you because they’ve been where you are. Singer Slade Baird, drummer Adam Phillips, and bassist Craig Lentz have gone through their share of difficulties. They want to help you feel good about things, though, even when things aren’t good. Especially then. To prove it, they’ll dress up heart aching poetry about the failure of a relationship in 50’s style doo wop. They’ll celebrate the shortcomings of God and man with defiant guitar solos. They’ll rockabilly their way around masculine emotions and boogie to disappointment with enthusiasm. Amigo won’t kid you that your troubles will all go away, but they can sure get you to dance in spite of them. At least for the night, Amigo can put a joyous twist on the madness and sadness life brings you.

Comfort and assurance, that’s what you get from this band. Even if they deliver those in rowdy fashion.

You trust them because their lyrics echo your own feelings and experiences. The music, familiar in a way that takes you back to easier times, provides a certain comfort too. Which is not the same as saying it’s soothing. The Amigo boys know their way around a honky tonk jukebox, that’s for sure, but they’re also proud of their old punk record collections. Raw emotion manifests in the music they play as clear as in the words they sing. This is not a band that holds back. Not on honesty or energy.

Amigo has maintained a rugged schedule of live performances in the Carolinas since 2012. On stage, the trio perform with remarkable confidence and fun. Adam, who played in Kimosabe with Slade, drums with delightful efficiency. Craig’s bass lines complete the jubilant rhythm section and provide harmonic texture to the songs. The guitar playing is well-edited but expressive, and Slade is a terrific showman, charming and engaging audiences with apparent ease. The band will embark on a national tour in fall of 2013 in support of their debut LP, Might Could, recorded with Scott Solter (Superchunk, The Mountain Goats).

Amigo knows life can be hard. They also know how to laugh, rock and roll, and have a good time. Be encouraged. You have a friend in Amigo.