February 7, 2014
Dallas, TX USA
Review by Nolan Smith
Photos by Kerry Langford
No Sax In The Granada Theater
Dallas and Austin based band Nelo is currently on tour with its new self-titled album released earlier in the week. Now with a handful of albums under their belt, the Granada Theater in Dallas, TX was well attended by college preps, hipsters and older professionals, a clear indicator that their music speaks to a large spectrum of faithful fans.
University of North Texas based band "Seryn" opened the set for Nelo in front of an adoring fan base. Front-man Trenton Wheeler is an exceptional talent that is unmistakable. The music and players all gave an enthusiastic performance and those who arrived early to see them, seemed to be feeding off of the bands energy and vice versa. It was an impressive performance from a band I was previously unfamiliar with. Their singing style and format may not be my personal favorite; however that still did not keep me from enjoying the performance. I'd encourage you to give them a listen and make your own decision.
The main event, Nelo, had a tremendous 16 song set followed by a 2 song encore. A comprehensive set list with songs like "Ordinary Scene," "Little Thing," "They Don't Know You," "Leave," "Jumping Bean," "Step," "Do you love me," and "Footsteps" amongst others. It was a great performance. The band sounded very tuned in and the lead guitarist showed some amazing skills with several guitar solos where he showed his shredding ability on the electric 6 string. It was extremely impressive. For those who have been following Nelo for years the new album sounds like it will be another good one to add to your collection.
If I had a complaint of the performance, it would be the obvious absence of the band's well noted (pun intended) brass section. In songs like "Jumping Bean" the saxophone’s absence was a travesty. In my opinion the saxophone was the band's signature sound piece, so for it to be absent was very unfortunate. It would be like Dave Matthews Band without their violinist or Chicago without their horns. It just needed to be there. Many within the crowd were commenting on how much it would have improved an already impressive show.