On Saturday, the Moxies took the stage at the Beachland Ballroom down in Cleveland. The Beachland Ballroom is one of my favorite venues for multiple reasons, but the number one reason is that you get the small, intimate concert feel without the claustrophobic feeling. It was an absolute joy to see the Moxies here, as well as all of the other bands that performed with them.
Kala Rose was the first artist to take the stage – an acoustic guitar singer from Cincinnati, Ohio who’s about fifteen years old. She only played a couple of songs, and despite sounding a little pitchy at some parts, everyone in the audience could tell just how amazingly talented she was.
After her was Lethal Synergy, a small local band from Middlefield, Ohio. They played a mix of covers and original songs and despite technical difficulties on the Beachland Ballroom’s part, they were absolutely amazing. Their covers took your breath away at times – particularly their cover of “Escape” by Muse, which was arranged in a unique and almost beautiful way by the band. They did a great job on the vocals, and completely nailed the guitar. It just blew me away. Their original songs were unique, instrumentally and vocally, and it really gave you that feeling that you were listening to something special. As far as the opening acts went, Lethal Synergy was definitely the one that left its imprint. Their stage presence is awesome (which is always a hard thing for a new band), and while they do have a long way to go, there’s no doubt in my mind that they’ll go far.
The Allies, a kind of alternative-indie pop-rock band from Akron, came on after them. It was a nice flow from one band to the other, and the Allies managed to get everyone’s attention with a few Queen Intros (“Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Another One Bites the Dust”) in between mostly original songs and a few covers. Instrumentally they were absolutely outstanding, and it was easy to dance and bop your head to their music. My only problem with the Allies performance was that it was hard to tell one song from the next because of similar sounding melodies. Time Cat, another band from Akron, came on after that. Their set was unique and interesting, and it really captured my attention – the vocals especially. However, it didn’t really capture my attention the way that the other acts of the night did. With three EPs already under their belt, they were definitely one of the more experienced bands of the night – worth checking out, definitely.
The Moxies came on after that. They were the headliners for the night, and you could tell that they were amped up and gearing to go by the time that they got to the stage. They relocated to Nashville recently, so this was the first show that they’ve played in Cleveland (only an hour away from their hometown of Middlefield) in a while. And you could tell that they were excited to be back.
Despite performing with a broken foot, the front man and lead singer/guitarist Marco Ciofani was pure energy on the stage. They all had an absolutely breathtaking stage presence, and the way that they interacted with the crowd was brilliant. All of their songs, from the originals to and a performance of “You’re the One That I Want” from Grease, were absolutely electrifying and got you pumped up. You immediately felt like you were lost in the music.
But the crowd is what really stole the show. From the minute that the Moxies took the stage, the crowd actually was totally lost to the music; jumping and dancing and turning it into a full out mosh pit. It was the type of crowd where you could totally lose yourself and forget about all of your worries and troubles while you were in there.
The one song that really took my breath away a duet cover of “I’d Rather Go Blind” between Ciofiani and Kala Rose that gave me goose bumps just because of Rose’s pure, raw vocal talent. In addition, they performed a few new songs that were absolutely outstanding as well. You can listen to the performance of “I’d Rather Go Blind” below.
Overall, it was a fantastic night full of amazing, talented bands – all of which are well worth looking into. If you’re ever in the Cleveland, Akron, or Nashville area and you want to hear some amazing music – give any one of these guys a listen to.
Pictures by Meghan Smock.