Review by Olivia Mello, Narrows Staff
July felt like a long one, anxiously waiting for the last performance of the month. I played their albums on repeat for weeks, trying to memorize all the clever lyrics and absorb all the funky riffs; but, nothing could prepare me for the epic-ness of last night’s performance.
The Ryan Montbleau Band blew the crowd away, and it was a big crowd at that, just shy of a completely sold out show. The band consisted of eight members, all distinguished and cool in their own way: two guitarists, Ryan and Lyle Brewer, who serenaded the audience earlier in the night as the opening act, a bass player, drummer, an INSANE xylophonist, a keyboard player, and two lovely ladies as backup singers.
One of the singers, Lydia, stole the show in a few instances throughout the night, flaunting her vocal scales with a little doo-wop. She showcased her big personality that I got a taste for during sound check, when she played a harmless trick on me and had the both of us cracking up.
The set had a perfect mix of fun, upbeat songs that made you want to get out of your seat and dance, sprinkled with a few beautiful ballads that accentuated Ryan’s soulful voice. “Growing Light,” which started the night off, “Song Bird” and their cover of “Lay Down Sally” were three tunes that had the crowd hooting and hollering.
For anyone who wasn’t at the Narrows last night, you missed quite the show, but luckily for you, the performance was filmed to stream on their website. It won’t be the same experience, of course, without the up-close and personal view you can only get on Anawan Street, but it should suffice.
“I can’t tell you how good it is to be back at the Narrows,” Ryan said, referring to the six other times he’s performed for us. “I love this place and it just keeps getting better.”
Maybe I’m biased but I can’t help but agree.