Terrible Things happened at The Rattler on April 3 – and the crowd loved it.
Following New York's Autoverse and a crowd-pleasing set by The Return Of (featuring Jeremy Romani of Goodbye Soundscape and virtuoso drummer AJ Jump), the West Chester trio blasted through 12 blistering rock songs in the packed little Pittston bar late Wednesday night.
Fronted by Fred Mascherino, former co-vocalist and lead guitarist for Taking Back Sunday, the longhaired axman, joined by bassist/backing vocalist Aaron Van Allen and drummer Steve Curtiss, who was also part of Mascherino solo project The Color Fred, opened with “History” from their latest EP, “Pre-Transmission,” and showed that this band is more rock than pop on songs like “Revolution” and “Up At Night” from their self-titled debut.
Thrashing his dreadlocks around wildly, Van Allen aptly kept up the energy while Curtiss kept up the pace. “Conspiracy,” a funny but accurate stab at conspiracy theorists, was a set highlight, while “Lullaby” and “Terrible Things” filled the room with thrashy guitar and seriously exhibited Mascherino's vocal and instrumental chops; he later picked up a bright red double neck guitar and finished the night with it.
TT broke up the set with a Color Fred song, “Hate to See You Go,” and a reggae-infused version of Taking Back Sunday's “Error Operator.” After “The Hills of Birmingham,” Mascherino, pouring sweat and barely visible behind his long blonde hair and beard, closed out the night with the second half of “Pre-Transmission” – “Innocent,” “Last Look,” and the slower but emotional “Hospital.”
While many came to see what this former member of Taking Back Sunday was up to, they left with a new understanding of Mascherino's work, eagerly snatching up CDs from the down-to-earth frontman as he reentered the crowd with a gracious smile.