I can honestly say that I have never seen a bad Bobaflex performance. Their show at Newport Music Hall on April 1st was no exception and that is no April Fool’s joke.
Despite stepping away to take be at home with his daughter, Shawn McCoy, hasn’t lost his enthusiasm for performing. He and brother, Marty, exude not only tremendous energy but also a love for each other that makes their stage show a definite family affair.
Drummer, Tommy Johnson was also back after a brief hiatus while Jymmy Toland ripped it up as usual. Jake Early, who also stepped away to form his own band last year, was on point as the quintet lit the stage up in front of a sold-out crowd.
Bobaflex performed older classics such as “Turn The Heat Up”, “Home”, and “Chemical Valley” as well as newer hits “A Spider in the Dark” and “I’m Glad Your Dead”. Whatever the era, they did it right with an electrical charge second to none.
Speaking of electricity, Columbus locals, Dread Engine, Gudger, and Over N’ Out set the table nicely for the headliner.
Like Bobaflex, Dread Engine, has never let me down. This five piece hard-rocking gang punches the spectators in the face in a good way. They continue to get better each time they take the stage. The sky is the limit for this group of fun-loving, bunch.
Front man, Rick Kaercher, doesn’t appear to be one that can hit that low powerful scream, but as they say, ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’. He is as powerful behind the mic as anyone you can name. Jay Coughlin and Johnathon Collins are a powerful rhythm section on the drums and bass respectively. Jake Spears has an amazing voice and teams with Steve Blankenship to present a formidable string tandem.
Once again, the boys of Dread Engine not only shredded the stage, but they were also hospitable hosts after their performance, signing autographs and taking selfies with all their fans.
Gudger may be a three-piece ensemble, but they still pack a musical punch. Headlined by vocalist and bassist Aaron Eddleblute, this trio is as solid as they come. I first saw Gudger back in 2015 at the Alrosa Villa and I was an instant fan. It was the Eddleblute three at the time with Aaron’s brother Matt a member at the time. The third member was the duo’s father, Derek, who is virtuoso on the six strings. The man can flat out play!
Joining Aaron and Derek on stage these days is Justin Kaplan, who showed his tremendous talent behind the kit. Gudger is still a must see whenever they are in your area.
Finally, opening the evening was Over N’ Out. This was the perfect way to get the evening started. Like the three bands that followed, Over N’ Out delivered a rambunctious set that was full of energy and power.
According to their Facebook page two members of the band were playing their last show. Both Cody Schrecengost (lead guitarist) and Jimmy Weaver (bassist) had
previously announced that this would be their final time on stage with Over N’ Out.
It’s a shame if that is the case, I really enjoyed their set. But life goes on even if you are a rock star. Until next time, this is Big L saying, ‘keep those horns up, and rock on’!! \m/ \m/