Coming down the home stretch, 2017 seemed like it was going to go down in the books as a pretty shitty year for most people, but fortunately for all of us, Tula Vera closed out the year with the release of their self-titled debut full length album. The young Montclair-based band has been growing in popularity in recent years and earning notoriety for their traditional blues rock stylings and taking many people by surprise by how immensely talented such a young group could be. The album release was celebrated on December 29 at The Meatlocker and also featured performances by Whiner and Jean Pool.
Whiner gave the Meatlocker crowd a shot of adrenaline to start the show with a set featuring some of their own new material that will be released later this year as their second album, which will be a follow up to 2016’s Forever. Whiner’s performances have become well known for being incredibly engaging, much to the credit of the charismatic stage presence of Cam Castan, and while Forever featured tunes that were more in line with a post-punk, shoegazy kind of vibe, the newer material is opened up to allow Christian Castan to really rip some lead guitar and new bassist Bridget Bakie to lay down some heavy, thumping bass.
Of course, known to never miss a party, Jean Pool carried the torch for their own raucous set. This show was particularly special as they were joined by their former guitarist, Dan Barracchia (currently of Shred Flintstone), to play their quintessential hit “Fluffy.” However, currently being a three-piece does have it benefits, such as being able to pull out Nirvana deep cuts and slaying a cover of “Territorial Pissings.
Tula Vera would close out the show with a performance of their new album. The young group consisting of Dylan Drummond, Claire Parcells, Joe Jansen, and Margaret Marino had previously been a band that many felt were very promising and showing a ton of potential to be a really special band, however with the release of this album, I would argue that the day has arrived. Drummond, the band’s lead guitarist, at only 19 years old has earned immense respect from his peers, many of which believe him to be the most talented and technically proficient guitarist in the local scene. These talents are clearly on display on tracks such as “Outerspace Place” and “Blue Skies.” The band has distinguished themselves with a sound that calls back to the traditional jazzy, blues rock of the 60’s that is both soulful and upbeat, inspiring crowds to dance or mosh – often even at the same time.
If you haven’t given Tula Vera’s album a listen yet, you’ve done goofed. But, luckily for you, the album is embedded below for your convenient listening pleasure. Tula Vera has also announced their next show will be January 26 at Boontunes along with Sister Munch, John Cozz, and more.
Adam gave man-birth to N.J. Racket and is as close to an "editor-in-chief" the site has. He's a god awful photographer.