My mission for Saturday night was to finally hear the band Beauxregard in a decent sound setting, which is what led me to the Grotto.
I made it there just as The Continuums was finishing up its set. The band consists of Cameron Goolsby (bass), Morgan Ries (drums), Barrett Boswell (guitar, vocals), and Austin Ries (guitar).
Rarely have I regretted missing the beginning of an opening band set as much as I did The Continuums. What I heard was some seriously hard rock and roll, devoid of any pretentiousness or fluff. I only got to hear two songs, but they left me wanting to hear much more.
The band has it its origins in Weatherford (with Cameron coming from Dallas), and now resides in Austin. We told you about the band’s EP last year, and you owe it to yourselves to check these guys out when you get a chance.
Up next was Beauxregard, playing a blend of post punk/new wave inspired by Italian composer Ennio Morricone, known for his spaghetti Western film scores. The band calls its music “desert noir,” and I guess that describes it as well as anything could.
The band consists of J. Quincy Romine (vocals), Chris Shockley (bass), Jonathan Rollans (guitar), Curtis Tinsley (guitar) and Guyton Sanders (drums).
Shockley replaces co-founder Ryan Rhodes, after he suddenly moved to Seattle, leaving the band unsure of the future.
“My best friend and co-founder of the band, and guy who I wrote everything with suddenly had to move to Seattle,” Romine said. “ At first I didn’t know if we were going to continue; I’ve never not played with him, but fortunately for us, Chris here just stepped up. He’s filled in marvelously and I couldn’t be happier.”
Musically, this band is rock solid. Sanders provided a driving percussive foundation, and the bass and guitar work couldn’t have been better. But the stage antics of Romine sent the show over the top. Time and again I was sure he was going to back into Shockley, and even though Shockley was new (and the stage small and cluttered with cables) it never happened. Everyone was in sync.
Vocals were emotive, and Romine alternated between singing through an Elvis mic and a harmonica bullet mic for a distorted sound. There was a certain vintage creepiness to the whole thing, and given their last album, it’s apropos.
“On our most recent album,” Romine said, “every song is how a ghost is made. Some tragic death before someone’s time, and given the circumstances they may not wanna let go. So they hang around like a ghost. It’s called Ghost of the Gas Lamps. It’s user-friendly horror pop.”
These guys are one of the most creative acts I’ve seen in a while, and even with a major lineup change they pulled off a first-rate live show. They’ve been around for nearly a decade — long enough to get past any rock-star aspirations and get on with the business of making music.
“Really, to be honest with you, I just wanted something to outlast me,” Romine says. “We had aspirations at one time to maybe go somewhere with it, but over time it became way more about just playing music with my friends. And maybe if other people like it, that’s cool. If it goes somewhere, great, I won’t kick that out of bed for eating crackers. But I don’t sit around and pine away hoping for great things.”