Music Review – Another Roadside Attraction and World History

World History and Another Roadside Attraction Live at the Bazaar

Another Roadside Attraction and World History – Live at The Bazaar

Roanoke, VA (Dec 8, 2010)

Tucked away from the surprising chill of an early winter, two bands complemented each other very well last night playing at the Bazaar, here in the ‘Noke. Describing themselves as an Americana, Roots, Regressive Rock band, Another Roadside Attraction shared the bill with a duo out of Seattle named World History.

First up, Neil Campau and Jamie Menzel of World History delighted the audience with songs written about “events that are rarely talked about in compulsory school textbooks,” (as their Facebook page explains). Indeed an interesting premise to use as one’s objective – not that historical information hardly makes it into music – World History engaged us with their topics as if travelers going back in time, perhaps as themselves or as commentators from today’s perspective looking back at a coincidental situation arising from some historical event. The spirit of the everyday person here-and-now seemed to hearken back to the emotion of their subject’s past moment in time. It was like hearing obscure mini-anthems from the unknown who were never given their say until now – accompanied with acoustic guitar, flute, and some non-traditional percussion.

Speaking of non-traditional, but in an ironic way… One is normally accustomed to hearing ragtime or old folkie music played by musicians with gray hair. Not so with Another Roadside Attraction. This local Roanoke band has youth, yet escapes the typical pop-music genres expected from musicians in their age group. Sure, some younger bands like to impress people by playing jazz. Some delve into the old 70’s rock classics their parents and grandparents listened to… Another Roadside Attraction instead take you back to when musicians performed their witty ditties and jingly-jangle tunes anywhere such a band of gypsies could pull over in a caravan and steal the public’s attention. True to their name, Another Roadside Attraction create this carnival atmosphere. Their arsenal of instruments last night were guitar, guitarron, ukulele, kazoo, fiddle, mouth trumpet, something called “the clockworks,” and other analog devices that usually would fall under some patch on a synthesizer ever since the invention of electronic instruments.

Both bands last night showed skill and uniqueness in their songwriting, un-pressured by today’s popular (and often over-produced) genres. It was a nice evening to go unplugged and be entertained by musicians that have reincarnated imagination.

Check them out at their MySpace pages linked above (click on the band names) and ”friend” them on Facebook:

World History –

Another Roadside Attraction -

(Photos courtesy stolen from their Facebook pages!!!)