New Monsoon

San Francisco rock quintet New Monsoon is the collaborative vehicle for the vocal and instrumental prowess of founding members Bo Carper (acoustic guitar and banjo), Jeff Miller (electric guitar) and Phil Ferlino (keys). Now well into its second decade of national touring, the band also features the muscular young rhythm section of Marshall Harrell (electric bass) and Sean Hutchinson (drums). New Monsoon's exhilarating blend of acoustic and electric instrumentation shines in an irresistible blend of sophisticated song craft, inventive musical exploration and down home rock-n-roll. "They have a collective power that comes off as a real unified force on stage.. It's not just a band, you know? It's something transcendental." – Michael Shrieve (original drummer, Santana).

Their new album, aptly titled "New Monsoon Live," was recorded during an epic 3 night run in Texas last September. Building upon their most successful studio album to date, "New Monsoon V," this live two-CD set is the band's first official release from the current 5-piece line-up, and their first live album since 2004. New Monsoon Live captures the band reaching one of their highest emotional, technical, and musical peaks.

Formed during the Spring of 2005 from an eclectic mix of gentlemen from both coasts and a little of the Midwest, Quactus came together in Los Angeles after guitarist Seth Gordon, drummer Matthew McDuffee, guitarist Gabriel Weiner, and bassist Greg Zachan had the good fortune of crossing paths with each other. The members of Quactus have over 30 years of musical and audio instruction amongst them in both private and college level courses, which has given the band a strong command of music theory, songwriting, improvisation, vocal technique and music production skills.

This combined experience finally culminated in the release of the band's self-produced and recorded debut album, "Once a pond, a spine…", in early 2008. The album's release, along with incessant promotion via the internet, has garnered a wider following for the band outside of Southern California, including a win on Jambands.com's "New Groove of the Month" Poll for May 2008 and an invitation to become a member band in the Home Grown Music Network, which has led to further national exposure and radio airplay. Additionally, the band has shared the stage with several national acts, including The New Mastersounds, Tea Leaf Green, John Popper (Blues Traveler), Moonalice (w/ members of Phil Lesh and Friends, Hot Tuna, Bruce Hornsby, and Jefferson Starship), EOTO (w/ members of String Cheese Incident), Leo Nocentelli (The Meters), Bobby Vega (Sly and the Family Stone), CR Gruver (Polytoxic/Outformation), Marc Ford (Black Crowes), Steve Molitz (Particle), Banyan, U-Melt, The Heavy Pets, Underground Orchestra, Delta Nove, Big Organ Trio, Jamie Janover, Leon Mobley, and Al Howard & the K23 Orchestra. Individual members of Quactus have also shared the stage or bill with Umphrey's McGee, Melvin Seals and the Jerry Garcia Band, Mr. Blotto, and NOFX.

Taking its cue from the classic jam bands, including the Grateful Dead, Phish, and the Allman Brothers, Quactus, has developed a diverse style that blends various genres of music. Harmonious vocals set atop shifting textures and moods, mixed with subtle meter changes, intricate melodies, and a cohesive improvisational style backed by a solid rhythm section comprise the core of the Quactus sound. Yet, their jams may run the gamut from psychedelic to trance-like to ultra-funky or even heavy metal excess. In a live setting, the band never performs a show the same way twice, often including on-the-spot composition via hand signals between band members. The band is also known for throwing in a cover tune or song tease from time to time. As a result, Quactus is establishing itself as one of the most exciting new live acts to emerge from the Southern California scene.

Currently the band is in the studio working hard on their sophomore album, "A Sense of We". The album will showcase some of the band's most progressive compositions to date, including tracks that contain elements of Hard Rock, Dance, Jazz, Acoustic, Reggae, Punk, Metal, World Music, and Jam Improv. With this album, the band's musicianship and production skills are being taken to the next level, while maintaining the core Quactus sound. The album is to be released on July 20, 2010.

Giving Tree Band

Led by enigmatic brothers Todd and "E" Fink, The Giving Tree Band are making their way to the head of a classy class of young American songwriters and performers. The Finks extended their brotherhood to all 7 members and started out with only a collective heart as big as the ocean. They now wield a wide array of instruments from acoustic and electric guitars, slide guitars and banjos to violin, mandolin and pedal steel. A band's band, they all live together, travel together and do everything as one family, harmonizing their voices and lives on and off stage. The Giving Tree Band is not reinventing but simply reuniting rock and roll. With their down-home style, they emphasize the virtue in their fierce virtuosity - playing each note with integrity, each part with humility, each song with honesty and each show with gratitude. The most common word among reviews is "undeniable" in regards to the chemistry on stage, the energy in the room and the feeling that something special is happening. With a rare combination of stirring musicianship and exemplary songwriting, the GTB wheel is in full spin and, like their heroes before them, it's also on fire.

$12 ADV / $15 DOS

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New Monsoon with Quactus, Giving Tree Band

Friday, October 18 · 8:00 PM at The Mint