I’ve been told by a musician friend of mine that I’m often too immersed in aesthetics when I see a band perform. According to him, if the presentation isn’t on point, my experience becomes immediately tainted. While that might be true, the reason goes deeper than a superficial desire for polished perfection. I’m looking for the chemistry of the band, their comfort on stage, and their authenticity. If those things are not aligned, I am far too distracted to fully dive in. There’s a lot of talented musicians that could be put together for a performance, but much like dating, it’s hard to find the chemistry that leaves you wanting more.
When I saw Transviolet perform at The Belasco Theater, I was immediately transfixed. The lead singer has an enchanting voice with songs to back it up, and her bandmates largely stay out of the way to let her shine. You won’t find the underlying tension you might see from The Head and the Heart (sorry, guys), for example, and they’re clearly happy to share the stage. In fact, Sarah McTaggart met fellow songwriter Michael Panek through an online add, and once their partnership was formed, Panek’s high school buddies, drummer Jonathan Garcia and guitarist Judah McCarthy joined. The group stand by their lyrics, stressing their importance on their four song EP, saying “it’s important to spread positive messages and have a nice effect on the world around us.” Listen to their song below, and go see them live if you can.