March 14, 2013
House of Blues - Dallas
Dallas, TX USA
Review by David Brais
Photos by David Brais
Slightly Stoopid Rallying the Troops
With Cleveland State University located just up the road, the House of Blues proved to be the ideal location for Slightly Stoopid to rally the troops. The timing couldn't have been any better either.
The prescient move did indeed attract a predominantly college crowd that made the most of the two mile jaunt to the HOB. Students as well as fun seekers filled the venue to capacity in order to regale their favorite reggae / ska band, and officially kick off their St. Pat's weekend. Mandatory dancing, singing and overall merriment was the order of the night as uninhibited jubilation filled the air. Simply put, everyone had fun.
Band co-founders Miles Doughty and Kyle McDonald wasted no time walking on stage and getting right down to business with "Chicken Fried Reggae". Not only did this tune set the tone and mood for the entire evening, it also made it clearly abundant why the younger set enjoys the musical concoctions this band mixes up. With their overall blend of folk, rock, reggae and blues shaken and stirred, Slightly Stoopid pours out the mixture into a smooth concoction of sound for all to drink up and salute.
Slightly Stoopid is a seasoned touring band whose recordings really don't do this band justice. You just have to experience their chaotic stage performance in person to actually "get" what this band is all about. Even hardcore Stoopid fans never know exactly what to expect from this eight-piece group of eclectic musicians.
Once the good ship Stoopid launched in to "Pinoche" a sea of hands was raised to support the numerous "crowd surfers" who made their way across the audience. As they made their way to the barricades, large security guards had no problem crashing their ride and hauling them off to the side. Doughty took exception to the rough tactics and stopped the show to admonish security. "We're all here to have a good time so relax," he said looking down at security. "These are just kids out for a good night!" It was a classy move by the singer, and diffused what could have been a tense situation. The band jumped right back into "Pinoche" and "surfers" reappeared to do their thing.
It really is amazing to see how a three-piece horn section, keyboardist, drummer, rhythm player, bass and guitarist artfully balance their talents to create a unique sound. As the band performed songs like "Don't Stop", "Anywhere I Go", "Ska Daddy" and "Struggla", the clever way in which they mixed up various styles of music into one seamless stream of music kept the pace going and fans constantly engaged. It's also not an easy thing for any band to conjure up and capture that Rasta spirit. As the band demonstrated with "2 Am" and "Digital", it was second nature to them.
Slightly Stoopid truly defies being placed into any musical category. There fiercely independent spirit has enabled them to rise above the chaos that has engulfed the music business the past ten years. With all the musical influences everyone in this group brings to the table, you would think it's hard for everyone's voice to be heard. It's not. And when you stop and think about it, that rebellious streak and lack of compromise on the band's part is the one thing that has kept them fresh and vibrant 18 years after their founding.
Top of the world indeed!
Chicken Fried Reggae
Anywhere I Go
Pon Da Horizon
Hold Onto the One
Babylon / Punk
Top of the World
We Don't Wanna Go
Express Yourself / Rolling Stoney