Live Review: Flobots - Troubadour - West Hollywood, CA
Wed, 11 Jun 2008 15:10:09
Seeing Flobots play a live show is the type of thing that will remain with you long after leaving the venue. Their music had soul, personality, technique and most of all a message. Some people sing about their broken hearts and failed romances, while Flobots base their lyrical content on something much more prominent to the United States population: political progress and change.
The happy onlookers danced, sang along, bobbed their heads and raised their hands in approval to every word that frontmen Jonny 5 and Brer Rabbit performed in their combination of spoken-word and melody. They blew through a plethora of their original content, as well as covered a few tunes. For example, we got to see their reggae/hiphop version of The Turtles classic "Happy Together," as well as an encore performance in which they covered Pat Benatar's "Heartbreaker." And while the Flobots are technically in the hip-hop genre, their use of a viola and the fact that the band as a whole is overflowing with music talent, which allows them to span genres. Every member plays more than a singular instrument—and they all can sing. This is what makes them so interesting to watch; there is never a lack of energy or a dull moment.
During the time that they were onstage the band showed what they were made of, although they had nothing to prove. The Troubadour was packed to capacity, as the show was entirely sold out, and rightfully so. This band has got it all, and it’s not a shock that they have a very strong fan base even though they haven't gotten much exposure to more mainstream-oriented folks, yet. Truth be told, in comparison to similar musical acts—a la The Black Eyed Peas—in an all out battle to the death I would expect to see Flobots reign victorious.
Closing with their single "Handlebars" [watch video], from their debut album, Fight With Tools, was a great idea, because it kept the energy level high up until the last minute. Flobots have equal parts talent, heart and passion to convey something more through their music. Their pride in their leftist political stance is perhaps one of the most alluring things about them. They believe they can change the world, and I’ll be damned if they don’t.