Rose Hill Drive: Are You Covered?

It was about six songs in, when the band went into a three-song mash that I began to wonder about my hips. The rock and roll was now nestled itself deep in my body, feeding off the whiskey in the blood stream and compelling my body to move. Problem is, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go the air guitar (or bass or drums) route or flail about wildly in true ROWYCO fashion, or slam my head into whiplash or what. I settled on some weird combination of the three and I’m not sure my joints were up to the task. There was no let-up, no time to rest the bones, just pure shredding nonsense. What would happen if I threw my hip out of whack trying to keep up with Rose Hill’s nasty, body-shakin’ rock and roll? [AFLAC!]

An hour and a half into the set, and it became a shoulder issue. I was now fully zoned into the show and the band and the crowd — I had become ultra-sensory. The trio was locked in so tight to each other that singling out a singular, primal lick from the guitar or a pure liquid, bowel-rattling bass bomb or fearlessly fluttering drum fill seemed ridiculous. It was all coming at me at a steady stream, and the only reaction I could muster was full-fledged fist pump — as high and as hard as I could for as long as my shoulder, my poor, poor shoulder, could stand it. I was not alone in proclaiming rock and roll triumph: The crowd pulsed as one unit the way the band did, fists raised high in the sweaty air. What would I be reduced to if my shoulder never lived to pump again? [AFLAC!]

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Finally, 90 minutes into pure sonic bliss, as the band wound down to a close, I worried about my liver. We call a lot of music “rock and roll,” but what are we really talking about? What is the metaphysical-ness that makes something rock and roll? With whiskey, the rules are clear cut: the grains, the country and county of origin, the barrel it’s made in. All of these things come to define a Bourbon or a Scotch.

Whatever the essence of rock and roll is, the things that spawned the air guitar, the fist pump, the black T-shirt, devil’s horns from raised index and pinkie and the distortion pedal…Rose Hill Drive has got it. Is it. Power trio to the core, they don’t rely on fancy songwriting or long-winded guitar solos or witty banter to make it through their evening. They just fucking rock and rock and rock and rock.

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There is nothing new being invented here, no new ground being broken. I could go into details on which song got stretched into a psychedelic puddle and which just slammed rock into hard place; about scintillating six-string excellence meshing perfectly with a glory-bound rhythm section; about wild-eyed, long-haired youth taking back their historical place on the mantle with amplifiers and twirling drumsticks in hand.

But you’ve heard this shit before — just not this good. They have just taken the basic rules and distilled their own batch of can’t-miss rockitude. I was drinking it by the gobletful Saturday night, and it was going straight into my bloodstream while my poor liver did it’s best to keep up, lest I go into toxic shock. I know my insurance doesn’t cover rock and roll overdose — how would I taste that sweet, burning rock and roll without my liver? [AFLAC!]

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12 Responses

  1. ive been dying to see them, couldnt hit saturday due to proio obligations

    i will be there next time they are around KANGFIRMED

  2. I cannot for the life of me figure out why these guys are not much bigger than they are. Saw them for the first time 2 years ago in front of about 10 people, and then again last year at the same venue with about the same size crowd, perhaps smaller. One of the few bands you WANT to see in a bigger venue with a bigger crowd. These guys are filling arenas with sound, sadly in small bars.

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