Last Saturday night Oh Sees played a Sell Out show at The Sinclair following their Boston Calling performance. For some lucky spectators, this was their second Oh Sees show of the day. However, those that missed the early afternoon set got everything you can expect from an Oh Sees show and more. A blistering performance where the essentials were played but the classics reveled in.
Oh Sees took the stage around midnight following the opening local act, Black Beach. John Dwyer, founding member and lead vocalist/guitarist, took the stage and said, “I hope you guys have been day drinking cause we kinda did at the festival.” In all respects, the front man of almost 20 years was by no means inebriated. He is a professional performer and a perfectionist at heart. If you have ever seen the Oh Sees, I am sure you can attest to this statement. John Dwyer will configure and tune his instruments until he knows beyond the shadow of a doubt that all is in optimal working order. The other night however, he jumped right into the set with only minor tinkering with the effects on his guitar and proceeded to rock the house.
They opened the set with a ripper off their latest album Orc, “The Static God.” The crowd was instantaneously animated. Within 30 seconds, anyone holding a beverage in his or her hand said goodbye to it. At least half of it. Following the raucous first song of the night, the band rolled into a 9-minute version of one of their most admired tracks “The Dream.” This one they kept interesting by extending the song with extra guitar licks to make for a very exquisite jam session. Considering the run time on the album version is already at 6:53, it’s safe to assume they can get tired of playing this song but if you were there that night, you wouldn’t have felt that way in the slightest.
As the late night continued, the Oh Sees peppered the crowd with several heavy hitting tracks like “Toe Cutter/ Thumb Buster,” “Animated Violence,” “I Come from the Mountain,” and “Web. “All from their more recent albums. One of the more intriguing things to witness at one of their shows is the dual drummer combo, Dan Rincon and Paul Quattrone who also plays in dance-punk band !!!. The beauty of this binary onslaught is their synchronicity while also adding short interjections of their individual styles. Its truly a sight to see. Meanwhile Tim Hellman, former member of San Francisco’s garage rock band Sic Alps, thumps along with his base guitar, barefoot and out of any spotlight.
To conclude the show John Dwyer tuned his guitar to the right setting, conferred with the drummers briefly, and informs the crowd “here’s our last one; It’s the long one, go get and a drink and come back or go get some clams, I don’t know. Its an old song, thanks for having us here Boston.” The band proceeded to carry out a 20-minute extended version of their deep cut, “Contraption/Soul Desert.” They poured out their remaining energy into that song and the crowd basked in the few remaining minutes by carrying out one last tumultuous mosh pit. With one final clashing climax, Oh Sees finished their set and received an uproar of applause and approval from the Boston natives. If you’ve never seen Oh Sees live I highly recommend you do. It will be a show you never forget.