The Boxer Rebellion- Live in Cambridge, MA 6-22-13

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The Boxer Rebellion
Live at The Sinclair
Cambridge, MA
Review and photos by Rob Watts

You didn’t have to wait until 9:15 for the headline act The Boxer Rebellion to entertain you. You could have stopped off at the merch table prior to the open band’s entrance as Boxer Rebellion’s drummer Piers Hewitt was manning the station until show time. Truly a testament to the indie band’s work ethic. Do as much of the work yourself for as long as you can. Piers, who in-fact was celebrating his birthday on that particular evening, is a very enjoyable and colorful character.

At 9:15, the band took to the small stage at The Sinclair. The 500+ venue was near capacity by the time the band opened with “Semi-Automatic.” Nathan Nicholson’s vocals were shined to a sheen over the band’s perfect to the note delivery. The Venus’s sound system was highly conducive to this band’s style of music. “The Runner” followed and “Diamonds”, which the band performed live on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno a week prior, was an audience favorite. Although a couple of highlights from their four albums were overlooked, the majority of material was well-selected and delivered. “Evacuate” and “Spitting Fire” were very moving performances, but it was “New York” that drew the crowd in with the lyrics being slightly altered in favor of “Boston.” This, along with a high-energy drum core assault performed by the other members of the band, was a sure-fire winner.

The band, in my opinion, deserved much more attention from the concert-goers. I’ve never understood why people pay money to attend a live music event, only to have lengthy conversations with their friends, as if the band is merely providing background music for their evening out. I find this new attitude among hipsters highly rude, bore-ish and unbecoming of a true music fan. Stay at home and let the real fans indulge in their favorite bands.

After the set, which ended with “Step Out of the Car”, the band signed CDs and other items for the fans. As we were hanging around off to the side away from the table by the time the fans cleared out, the band members chat it up with us for a short spell. They signed a couple of items for us and had a nice talk with us about their time in the States and their hometown of London. They were all very gracious and offered to take some pictures with us, unbeknownst to them that the show was being reviewed. Just four very nice guys who are in an exciting unsigned band, doing it all on their own terms. It doesn’t get much cooler than that! (Rob Watts)

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