Axe the Cables: Mountain Winery
05 Sep 2012

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>>>Dream Chaser Activist * Live Music Enthusiast * Cannabis Industry Expert *Sparkle Spreader * Mindfulness Teacher * Yogi Artist with a Mermaid Soul <<<


It was a crisp night for an acoustic evening with STS9 at Mountain Winery, a vineyard established in 1905 by famous wine connoisseur Paul Mason. Mountain Winery, in Saratoga, CA, is known for rising from the rubble of the San Francisco earthquake in 1907, surviving prohibition, and becoming home to unforgettable performances by legends like Lyle Lovett, Willie Nelson, and Ray Charles. To experience one of Tribe’s “Axe the Cables” acoustic performances at this remarkable venue was a very special opportunity for a Sparkleberry.

This night wasn’t your ordinary Tribe show and most fans, myself included, came dressed to impress. Flat brims and sequin tops were traded in for fancy dresses and stylish sport coats. Everyone was feeling as good as they looked and the band themselves even came fashioned for the occasion.

Growing vines blooming with grapes surrounded the pathways leading into the venue, and as I got closer to the entrance a familiar Circus charmed a smile on my face. I was late by just a song, and was disappointed to have missed Kamuy, a magical opener for the intimate evening we were all about to indulge in.

To almost everyone’s surprise the show was really intimate. Perhaps the event was not promoted enough or maybe Burning Man took a slew of potential attendees. Regardless, the low number in attendance probably helped the band put on a more organic concert, and I certainly was delighted to be one of the ones to hear it.

I was wondering where everyone was for South of Here and a romantic From Now On, but by the time RoyGBiv orgasmed into Dance, everyone took full advantage of the  spacious circumstances. With so much available space we found ourselves owning the nose bleeds!

Set one neared its end with a pleasing bongo performance from Jeff Lerner for …And Some are Angels. Beyond Right Now proceeded, and as Bassist Dave Murphy plucked us through the rhythm, David Phipps made love to his keys. The first set concluded with the Rolling Stones’ Sympathy for the Devil cliff hanging on some jazz funk.

Set two got straight to business with Equinox followed by Lo Swaga. Before Squares and Cubes commenced Murph reminded us about the significance of the venue and its convenience to the band. Zach, Hunter, Jeff and both David’s would all be sleeping in their own beds after the show, a luxury which potentially influenced the top-notch performance.

Wika Chikana, a song made for cool cats that like slow building melodies was properly introduced by a unique unnamed jam. Grow consistently flowed a jazzy rhythm with Zach Velmer’s contribution on drums and Moonsocket prepared everyone for second set’s closer- one of my favorites- Rent!

Although I had high hopes for a Tap In encore I found peace with Frequencies 2 > 3 and Breathe In.

Tribe filled everyone up with their beautiful vibrations giving each of us individually enough love to carry us throughout the rest of our evenings. The venue was spectacular, and even though the wine, at $19 a glass, was way over most of our budgets, everyone seemed to enjoy the intimate experience with STS9. I will add, however, that I was a little confused about the whole axing of the cables.  The first time I experienced “Axe the Cables” was in Atlanta, at the Tabernacle in 2010 and that show seemed more genuinely acoustic, while this night’s show seemed to be pretty plugged in. Regardless, both evenings offered unique performances from the band and an unusual performance is always a good one for the books.

Please stay in touch with Sparkleberry Lane for more coverage on Tribe’s upcoming Fall Tour.

Download the soundboards from Saratoga here.

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