Indie rock mainstays Modest Mouse and up and coming rockers The Districts, just wrapped up a four night run at Brooklyn Steel. I had the chance to catch night 2 in Brooklyn and part of their set in New Haven. Live music is coming back strong, and Modest Mouse has been one of the first indie rock bands to set off on a full North American tour, paving the way for what is sure to be a jam packed fall concert season. 

Known for their fuzzed guitars and energetic performance style, The Districts never fail to pump up the crowd. Frontman, Rob Grote, puts all he has into every guitar solo while also delivering powerful vocals. Pat Cassidy and the rest of The Districts consistently give great performances expanding upon the studio versions of the songs, creating a different listening experience every show. Their sound can best be described as noisy garage rock with subtle folk influences, making them an opener that fans of Modest Mouse can surely enjoy. 

With the crowd properly hyped by The Districts, Modest Mouse came out and consistently brought the house down. Playing a different setlist every night on tour, they never failed to keep fans on their toes, with a mix of new and old songs and even some live debuts.The best aspect of Modest Mouse’s live performances are the nuances in the vocals and instrumentals that are only heard in the live versions. Vocal inflections, tone changes, new guitar riffs, additional instruments and a clear passion for the music transform each song into something you wouldn’t expect based on the studio versions. Issac Brock and Modest Mouse aren’t afraid to experiment when playing live and don’t feel the need to replicate the studio sound during the performance, making for an exciting concert experience. They also don’t need the flashy gimmicks, the music speaks for itself. I would definitely say that Modest Mouse is one of those bands that is just better live. 

Best Songs to Catch Live: “Dramamine” – Modest Mouse, “Cheap Regrets” – The Districts