MUTEMATH | 02.28.12

As far as faith goes, Meany’s organ playing often made the show feel like a revival that was far too fun not to be a sin.





Photos: Cencio Boc


Some bands luck their way into the spotlight; other bands work hard for years, even decades without getting a glimmer. For New Orleans’ MUTEMATH, the spotlight is on every time they arrive on stage.

Last time the band was in St. Louis it was in an opening role for alt-rockers 30 Seconds to Mars. Given the crowd’s reaction that night, a nearly sold-out show tonight seemed to be assured; the balcony, however, remained closed. The pit and surrounding sections, though, were quite full of passionate fans hanging on to every word from lead singer Paul Meany.

The passion was often returned as the band both began and ended the night walking among its faithful followers. As far as faith goes, Meany’s organ playing often made the show feel like a revival that was far too fun not to be a sin. Everything from the lights and projected images to the general vibe in the room seemed positive and open.


When it came to the music, the band played through the entirety of 2011 release Odd Soul, largely ignoring previous offering Armistice in favor of its self-titled major-label debut, as well as three tracks from the Reset EP. The set list was very wisely assembled, with a few singles mixed in and a good helping of newer tracks. Marching through the crowd as a drum line that introduced “Odd Soul,” the band arrived on stage and drummer Darren King began abusing his drum kit in a way that should keep Zildjian cymbals in business.

Very rarely does a drummer come along that can attract as much, if not more, attention than the lead singer, but that is the case with MUTEMATH. The band often makes King the center as they surround him, each grabbing something and pounding away at everything in the general vicinity.

The middle portion of the set did see Meany, as well as a good portion of the crowd, finding a seat—to be fair, it was probably necessary for the band to slow down and take a break during the its 26-song set. It brought the crowd to a near slumber, beautifully playing through “Stall Out,” “In No Time,” and “Noticed.”

As MUTEMATH launched into “Chaos,” the crowd was awakened, and from that point on a constant buzz persisted in the room that would not fade. Meany would spend a large portion of the rest of the set in the crowd, both surfing on top of a lighted air mattress or physically standing in the middle of the crowd screaming out the lyrics and jumping with everyone else on the dance floor.


Openers Canon Blue were a fantastic addition to the tour and often showed their thanks to MUTEMATH for bringing them along. The group have an eccentric style that leaves the crowd wondering whether the next track will be a head banger or a dance number. Their latest album, Rumspringa, came to life with much heavier guitar parts than on the record. “Chicago (Chicago)” brought the set to an end like a beautiful tidal wave, charmingly destructive.| Bruce Matlock

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