Before this show, having listened only lightly to The Accidentals, I was under the impression that I was going to be watching a very immature, shallow, pop folk band. This idea, however, after the show, can singularly be attributed to my own ageism. The age of the members of the band has nothing to do with their music. That’s a lie, it does have something to do with their music, but The Accidentals proved that they had depth, talent, and grit, with their performance at Storyville Coffee.
The night opened with Abigail Stauffer, a vagabond-esque pop artist with a strong folk influence. Abigail’s strength was found in the clarity of her voice. It had hints of the person that sang the songs in the movie Pocahontas [ed. note – Judy Kuhn], with a smidge of Colbie Caillat, with a little bit more flaw too it, which I found endearing. Though I could tell there was a large amount of thought put into her lyrics, they came off a bit contrived, and as hard as I tried, I just couldn’t connect to the songs she played. The highlights of her set were when she brought on members of the Accidentals, and they played songs together, which gave off the sense of community and love, which I could tell, meant a lot to Abigail.
After Abigail came the Accidentals, and a rush of my own ageism. As Katie walked on with her cat stockings and newsprint dress, I thought to myself, “These are just some teens that probably watched God Help The Girl too many times.” Okay. First, of all, Marcus, you love God Help the Girl. Second of all, WRONG, MARCUS, STOP BEING AGEIST.
This band quickly proved me wrong, oh so wrong, so many times throughout their set. Now, I don’t want to get ahead of myself. This band is not perfect. There are hints of immaturity, and hints of times where I felt I could have been watching two different bands, but The Accidentals’s talent really made those other things irrelevant.
The band is split into two different sections. First are the songs that Katie sings, which are the poppier, catchier, more upbeat, and blunt songs. Second are the songs that Savannah sings, which are deep, full, powerful, and full of metaphorical emotion. Both of these sections are awesome, however, I do prefer one, and I am not sure if the band can sustain both, as they are so different. Katie-sung songs with a sense of wit, sarcasm, and relatable emotions are REALLY good, but that has been done before, over and over again, and I am not sure how much it interested me. Savannah-sung songs, however, are powerful, and so clear. Her voice is much fuller than Katie’s and it has a capturing quality to it that it is far beyond explanation. These two types of songs mixed with the fantastic violin skills of Katie, the brilliant cello playing of Savannah, and the dependent percussion from Michael, made for a wonderful set.
The highlight of the set was the last song, where the band dropped their cords and played their song “Nightlife” acoustically in a circle. The lighting of Storyville Coffee was perfect for this emotional shanty. With the vintage lightbulbs, gorgeous setup, and warm cozy feel of the café, the band was able to capture everyone’s warm and gooey feelings. This was the best performance of the night as well as the best song that was performed all night. You could hear every single bit of passion in the each of the three member’s voices and the pain and distant sadness of the song is simply brilliant. I was quite sad to not find a professionally recorded version of “Nightlife”, but this attests to how great the song was.
This band has so much talent in just three members. Whether this band makes it or the next bands that these band members are in make it, I can’t imagine that their talent will go undiscovered for too long. Being able to host multiple different sounds and still maintain the ability to sound professional and clean is something that I haven’t heard from many bands. I am very excited to see this band progress and I hope that listeners can keep up with them. I highly recommend this band to fans of Wild Child. I am also excited to see Storyville Coffee progress as a warm little venue, as this show’s vibe would not be possible anywhere else.
Thank you, Storyville, and thank you The Accidentals. Please send me a recorded version of “Nightlife” so I can get it out of my head.
MARCUS SHRIVER | The Tent | KXSU Head Reporter