Although Saint Motel was the Headliner, it was Finish Ticket who stole the show and hearts of a sold out Crocodile Café.
Just two years ago, Finish Ticket had a smattering of an audience at The High Dive as they attempted to dip their toes into the Seattle Scene. They blew away what fans were there that night and got a rousing chant for an encore, something management says rarely happens there for a touring band, especially on weeknight. Fast forward to last year at The Crocodile, Finish Ticket definitely had gained some fans, but they had to be wondering if they’d ever get a foothold in our scene? The band played a sold out show at The Fillmore but will they be able to draw a small room in Seattle?
For their performance April 2nd, Finish Ticket had literally just got off a plane from Amsterdam and Lead Singer Brendan Hoye, noted they were a bit jet lagged but you wouldn’t have known it by their performance. Brendan is as charming and charismatic as he is handsome. I was surprised that he strapped on a guitar for the whole set as he typically prefers to be hands free on stage. Don’t get used to it, although he’s a competent guitarist, he’s only playing because they didn’t bring an extra guitarist on their European tour with AWOLNATION but they’ll soon be picking one up for performances here in the states.
Before the European tour, the guys had been laying down tracks in LA and also recorded an EP in London with Producer Mike Crossey (The 1975, Arctic Monkeys, The Kooks). I talked to members of the band individually and unbeknownst to them, they all said that they think the new music is their best yet! Now that they’re back in the states, they’ll be working pre-production as to how they will perform the tracks live vs on the album. They’re so ready to introduce new songs to the fans since they’ve been playing their current album “Tears You Apart” for four years now.
Although Finish Ticket is Pop laden, they know how to show their Rock chops with some solid weight as was witnessed in their closing song “Bring The Rain” which brought a rousing cheer from the crowd. No encore could follow that unless you’re going to come out and sing a quiet ballad on an acoustic guitar or piano. That song kills! It’s quite a site watching Lead Guitarist Alex DiDonato tear it up on stage. He’s very tall yet plays his guitar slung very low which is unique and fun to watch.
I was privy to some very exciting news that I can’t share just yet. You can be sure I’ll break it here once I get the high sign. Watching this performance it’s easy to predict that Finish Ticket will soon be playing and selling out some of Seattle’s largest clubs and festivals in the near future. The members of the band have instinctively made good choices over the years and as I always say, “Slow and easy wins the race.” Atlantic Records promotion of the new upcoming record should send them soaring and it couldn’t happen to a nicer group of guys. Catch them this year as they return to Napa’s BottleRock 2015 on May 30th with a monster roster of big names.
Saint Motel is definitely a party band. The music made me feel like I was at Ft Lauderdale for Spring Break. Calypso like, the tropical beat kept people moving and the horns added to the fun. Lead Singer, A/J Jackson charmed the pants off everyone with his retro Buddy Holly-ish crooner good looks that just really fit the project. It really felt like they were having a good time and the room was happy. An easy way to measure? Fans didn’t pour out of the club like a swollen river after the last song, instead they lingered and bought merch, talked with band members, and got their merch signed. No one was in any hurry to leave.]