Archie Powell and the Exports - Quarters - Milwaukee - 2/24/12
It has been probably been about 20 years since I have been to Quarters, a music venue in Milwaukee’s Riverwest neighborhood. Now called Quarters Rock and Roll Palace, this venue is greatly improved . Kudos to the bookers, in which they are bringing bands in that otherwise, would never perform in Milwaukee. Friday night was Archie Powell and the Exports, a four piece from Chicago via Madison, WI. They have released one cd so far, “Skip Work” and have a new release scheduled for May. The second they hit the stage, the crowd went crazy. Patrons were singing along to every song, frantically jumping up and down playing to the tremendous energy of the band. This is no Dave Matthews sing along, this was a PBR fueled “we love these guys” adoration. The band performs sharp three minute loud rock and roll songs. Pure power garage pop, tons of hooks and catchy rhythms. Every song remains in your head and then becomes your favorite Archie Powell song. Until the next one. This is a band that loves to play live and play together. Reviews I’ve read compare them to Elvis Costello and Weezer. I don’t see it, as they are much better than Weezer. I can hear a minor influence of Tom Petty in the vocals and some of the choruses reminded me of s slightly more energetic Camper Van Beethoven. Musically, it did remind me of the great power pop band from Nashville, The Shazam. The only downside to the evening was the insanely drunk guy in front who kept throwing punches at people. It was entertaining to watch to the band try and kick him to keep him away from the stage.