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REVIEW: Rock Showcase 2016

Rock Showcase '16

The ‘70s-chick-with-roses-in-her-hair cover art was reminiscent of the Grateful Dead.

Everything from Led Zeppelin to former Belmont band COIN played over the speakers between performances.

And four bands, rooted in classic rock, took classic sounds and turned them into something fresh at the 2016 Rock Showcase Saturday night, with Wilder coming out on top.

Planet Pluto, a band with classic influences such as the Beatles and Black Sabbath, kicked off the showcase, demonstrating its obvious hard rock influence with its cover of “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” by the Smiths, and its third song placed the audience inside the Radiohead song Thom Yorke never wrote.

The Niles Rooker Trio, despite being the smallest group to perform, filled the room without killing eardrums. The band, originally a blues-rock band, pulled off its goal of “aspiring to revisit sounds from the 1950s and 1960s” while also adding a modern take.

The Trio’s take on a Kings of Leon song was Chuck-Berry-meets-indie-rock. Its final song, an original called “I Won’t Sleep” had a fun, bouncy feel, and the audience clapped to its beat.

Up next was winner of the night, Wilder. The band ended with a heavily dynamic, acoustic guitar driven song with powerful lyrics and a catchy chorus.

The members of the band moved toward the singer’s mic for captivating Americana/folk-style harmonies and then returned to their places onstage for a soft jam and, finally, a large sounding close.

The last Belmont band to hit the stage was the Pressure Kids. Striving to create “something innovative and fresh,” the indie rock band succeeded. Every band member had explosive stage presence.

The Pressure Kids covered Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams,” taking one of the most classic rock songs of all time and transforming it into modern indie rock.

Saturday night, Belmont students witnessed the constant evolution of rock and roll right before their eyes. Wilder will perform at the Best of the Best Showcase event in 2017.

This article was written by Reed Ferguson. Photos by Hunter Morgan and Carina Eudy.

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