Monty Hall is the performance space of WFMU, one of the few remaining independent, listener-supported radio stations in the country. WFMU has been the punk of radio stations for more than twenty years, refusing to accept advertising money and celebrating musical diversity with their free-form programming.
Their venue space is a reflection of WFMU’s overall philosophy, and there have been a wide range of acts hosted there. It’s small, with an innocuous store-front, hiding in plain sight on a busy Jersey City street. It holds about 100 people, and has an excellent sound system and great acoustics. It was the perfect place for an intimate show.
The Homeless Gospel Choir is the musical brainchild of the multi-talented Derek Zanetti. It’s always a pleasure to see Derek perform; he brings an earnest joy to the stage that the audience responds to enthusiastically.
It was just Derek and his guitar, but he was armed with his sense of humor and sharp wit, and a way with words that people connect with. He sang his protest songs to a crowd that, for the most part, was barely old enough to vote, and they loved him. There were many familiar songs off I Used To Be So Young and Luxury Problems, as well new material from his upcoming record.
What I really love about Derek’s music is how it makes the idea behind protest songs relatable, especially to a younger generation without a real historical understanding of civil disobedience and social movements. His songs are always intensely personal, and the way he talks frankly about mental illness is so very important.
The Homeless Gospel Choir is hoping to release the new album in April, and Derek plans on touring extensively in support of the new material. The last album, I Used To Be So Young is available at all major digital retailers and at the website.
Not long after they dropped their new album Parachutes, the members of Frank Iero and the Patience were in a terrible accident, and their extensive US fall tour was canceled so they could spend the rest of the year recovering physically, emotionally, and mentally.
Aside from a short, secret set at the Starland Ballroom last week (disguised as the band Aerosniff), this was the first time that the Patience have played since October, and that was probably part of the motivation to choose Monty Hall as the venue.
It was an inspired choice, and it paid off with an absolutely exceptional show.
The band started off with World Destroyer, a heavy, thrumming banger of a song and ended with the rocker Oceans, another great song off the new album. Sandwiched in-between was a mix of old and new songs, and the band has never sounded better.
Part of what made this such an amazing show was the energy in the room, with the band throwing off so much sheer joy in performing, and then having the audience reflect that energy back to them, amplified. It was a sea of raw emotions, across a spectrum of feelings, and it moved through the band and the crowd. There was sweat and tears, laughter and love and the sheer exhilaration of being in a room full of people centered on the here and now.
If there were any doubts about the readiness of the Patience to hit the road, this show totally killed them. This band is ready to take on the world.
Frank Iero and the Patience’s newest album is Parachutes, which dropped October 31, 2016. It’s available at all major digital retailers and through the website. They are headliners for an April/May tour, and will be playing select stadium dates in support of the Deftones and Rise Against in June/July. If you’ve never seen the Patience live, you really haven’t lived.
I think this particular show was magical, to borrow Frank Iero’s mid-set words, and it really brings home why I love live music so much.
ETA: Fr.U.N.T. Music has been fortunate to talk with both Frank Iero and Derek Zanetti in the past. Check out the great interviews here:
Frank Iero: 2015, 2016 Part 1 Part 2 Part 3
Derek Zanetti: 2015
by cardiac_in_overdrive (@cardiac_ovrdrv)