Touring in support of his latest album, Eat at Whitey’s, controversial artist Everlast took a sold-out crowd for an energetic 21-song ride last Thursday at the TLA.
Dexter Freebish opened the show. If you haven’t heard of these five young men in your flicking of the radio dials, expect to do so soon. They have a crafty and harmonious pop sound (reminiscent of The Beatles and U2) that is presented in a light totally unique to their own.
What sets the Austin, TX alternative pop/rock quintet apart from the rest of today’s rock/pop groups is they are passionately song-driven. With their songs bringing about a sense of familiarity to personal troubles and relationships, Dexter Freebish played 10 songs from their debut album, A Life of Saturdays. Among the harmonious songs that stood out where “Tomorrow,” “Falling Down” and the band’s beautiful single, “Leaving Town.” This is a band that is going places and is worth checking out.
After a great opening act of passionate music, it was time for the former House of Pain front man, Everlast, to bring his mix of hip-hop, blues and guitar rock to the sold-out crowd. Backed by a six-piece band, he chose to shake the crowd up with songs from his House of Pain past, covers of his favorite hip-hop songs and his current hits.
“Whitey” opened the night off, followed by House of Pain hit “No Doubt” and “Get Down” from Whitey Ford Sings the Blues. The energetic current track, “I Can’t Move,” from Eat at Whitey’s came next and then a revamped version of Marvin Gaye’s 1972 hit, “Trouble Man.”
After continued requests from the crowd to play some of his better-known songs, Everlast played, “Ends,” and “Today (Watch Me Shine)” from the platinum selling Whitey Ford Sings The Blues. His current singles came next with “Black Jesus,” and “Babylon Feeling.” The first involved the crowd’s participation as the chorus and the latter came off without any flaws despite the absence of the legendary Carlos Santana, who performs on the album version.
An old-school jam followed, including covers of Sugar Hill Gang’s “Apache” and Gang Starr’s “Fed Up.” After concluding his covers for the night, Everlast told the crowd what he thought of Pringles current advertising campaign for using the song, “Jump Around.” “Hey Fuck Pringles,” he said before playing the House of Pain hit.
Next in line were stand out songs, “Black Coffee”, “Love For Real” and “We’re All Gonna Die.” Sticking with the “death-theme,” he played “Death Comes Callin” from Whitey Ford Sings The Blues.
The smash single, “What It’s Like,” concluded the first part of the set, but before his guitarist could finish going to the bathroom, Everlast had already gotten back on stage with the rest of the band for the encore.
The fast paced three-minute plus vocal song “Children’s Story” led the way of the encore. After not missing a lyric in the continuous song, he earned the well-deserved breath of air that came on the slower “Pop Life.”
The depressing blues-styled “7 Years” came before the show’s conclusion of, “Put Your Lights On,” which also sounded great despite the absence of Santana.
Few expected that kind of energy and live enthusiasm when they walked into the sold-out show. It was a striking performance by Everlast, the only song he neglected to play was “So Long” off of the End of Days Soundtrack.