Where does the time go? It seemed like only a few weeks ago I had seen a band called Indias that totally blew my mind at the Yucca Tap Room and shortly after that over drinks got to tell them so myself–they did mention that they would be changing their name soon. But has it really been a year since they debuted as Future Loves Past? Apparently it has been and to celebrate this occasion they had an amazing blow out show at Long Wong’s at The Firehouse on Saturday, September 10th. Joined by Dylan Pratt, HiFi Beta, The Muddy Moneys and Japhys Descent the evening was an amazing night of musical celebration for one of the best emergingbands this area has to offer. Let’s face it, it’s been a hell of a year for Future Loves Past and its been an amazing journey watching them blossom as four seasons have drifted through our lives. Over the course of the last I’ve caught probably ten shows (maybe more) and ever time I’d shake my head and say the same thing in understated astonishment: “They just keep getting better and better, everytime I see them.” Sometimes it was only slight improvement, other times, if I hadn’t seen them in a month or so, it was massive leaps in sonic triumph. I’ve seen them open for some of the best bands in town and they’ve quickly become a favorite of other local bands (many members of which were in attendance last Saturday) and I’ve seen them starting to headline and draw quite a crowd. It’s been quite a year for Future Loves Past.
I arrived right before their set last Saturday and had time to help friends and fans bring in over a hundred balloons as well as various treats, party favors and get the feel of an adoring crowd that was happy to be celebrating a beloved birthday. Everyone was primed and smiling and though the set was only nine songs long and without an encore they once again blew everyone’s mind wide open as they’ve been doing, very nearly weekly for the last year at every decent venue in town. Future Loves Past somehow combines indie rock, psychedelia, Americana, outright folk music, country embellishments, a touch of British Invasion and hints of 1970s classic rock with flourishes of 80s synth work–that description may seem overwhelming, but the aural amazement at their shows can’t be denied in any capacity. I’m continually surprised by the influences they incorporate into their sound and around each new corner it seems they have another surprise in store–and sometimes that’s just watching or listening to a song of theirs evolve over time. For instance if you compare the sound of “I’m Free” on their Live @ Rogue Bar EP to how it sounds now, it’s fascinating to hear something that started with a thin Carribean feel to the massive Funk number that it is now. Always growing.
The set on their one year anniversary opened with the crowd pleasing fan favorite “Earth” which has to be maybe the best song laden with a semi-hippy aesthetic written in over twenty years. As a fan of short songs, this is one fo the few tunes I would be happy to hear go on and on for an excessive amount of time–it’s definitely one to get the crowd roaring and into the spirit of things and once more it’s another number that has become something amazing to hear grow and transform across the last twelve months. When “I’m Free” was launched in all its funk drenched soulful splendor, the gigantic beach balls were released, balloons were unleashed and all modesty was abandoned by the crowd. What followed next was something I hadn’t heard before. Their cover of Pink Floyd’s “Fearless” was impeccable–and this is saying a lot, mostly because Meddle is my favorite Floyd album, but this was dreamy, amazing and I hate to say it, maybe even better than the original, the crowd went even higher into the clouds at this point…if they weren’t already there.
It seemed to me that the back to back placement of “Mountain” and “A Few Kind Words” was perfectly placed in the center of the set in a one two punch of country drenched Americana. Don’t mistake this to be music without a groove, think about what Gram Parsons or Neil Young or even Ryan Adams does with that kind of sound. It was amazing and its amazing to watch and listen as they incorporate this sound into something so fresh, without irony and maintain an utterly cool vibe, because their sound is authentic out of sheer love for the music and performing it in front of a crowd that totally digs it. “Marvo” marked a return to trippiness, with Carribean rhythms and amazing keyboard work in tow, then “Outsiders” followed with heavenly ascending and amazing harmonies, by this time the crowd was ecstatic and nothing beyond the walls of Long Wongs even mattered–in truth for all concerned there that night, nothing did.
“Big Cities” is a song where Future Loves Past gets to rock out and I can tell that much from how blurry my notes became and how much I was dancing with a beer in hand. At this point, I must admit, I had somewhat abandoned strict journalistic law (well, I abandoned that a long time ago) and indulged in being “pure music fan.” The hypnotic groove of “Black Eyes” kept everyone glued to the dance floor–well, alright, their eyes and ears were glued to the stage, their feet were a blur and it is clear that they finished on a very similar note to which the set began with an instant hit. “Earth” is clearly one of their should be “hits/single” and “Black Eyes” is quick in its wake. It’s one of the most memorable and rewarding songs in their set. The only surprise that evening was that it was the last song on the set and there was no encore. We all wanted more, but we know we had gotten everything we needed for now and encore or no, we all walked away satisfied with what had just happened. It was an amazing night and an amazing set–tight and right, they blew our collective minds and the roof off the hosue at once.
Future Loves Past, like a few other bands of note in this town, are a complete anachronism. It occurred to me after the show that should there ever be a method to time travel you could pretty much drop this band into 1972 or even 1992 and watch the flurry of success that follows as they change history. All I can hope is that when we drop them into 2012 that exact phenomena occurs and I’ve heard tell that recordings are coming, amazing studio efforts that will give us something to enjoy during the time between their stellar stage shows, between the times we can’t be with them live. They are the definition of watching potential become kinetic and it’s a fantastic metamorphosis to be fascinated by.
If you haven’t seen them yet, perhaps you should do yourself a favor and drop by Long Wong’s tonight, rumor is they’ll be dropping some new songs around midnight, making life right and adding some killer tunes to an already amazing Friday night with the likes of North Dakota, Sareena Dominguez and Born Loser Hangers On. The festivities begin at 9pm…come out and enjoy some local love and love every not of it. If you can’t and perhaps for some strange reason you haven’t heard the music of Future Loves Past, check out the three free tracks from the online ep Live @ The Rogue Bar HERE.