Named after the Hawaiian word for "the sound," the Icelandic genre-limboing rock 'n' roll/jazz/blues group Kaleo brought more than just a single sound to Milwaukee. Kaleo brought many â€“ as well as many fans for a band that may be an unknown to some.
The initial cheering died down after a moment as the four members of the Icelandic band took the stage at Turner Hall Ballroom for the first time on Wednesday night. The four were quiet as they seemingly tuned their instruments, then suddenly concerted into the opening riffs of popular track "Canâ€™t Go On Without You." The crowd stood in awe, eyes fixed and jaws silently dropped, as lead singer and guitarist JJ Julius Son aptly whistled the first few notes. As the first words dripped from his mouth, his voice was thick, velvety and loaded with heartfelt talent.
The musical expertise did not stop there. As the show waged on in the rustic ballroom, the walls trembled with bassist Danny Jonesâ€™ ardent strums. Chills seeped down the audience's collective back as riffs left the strings of Rubin Pollockâ€™s guitar as he played "All the Pretty Girls" beside Julius Sonâ€™s falsetto ballad and the crowdâ€™s hushed singing along.
With few conversational interludes, it was clear that Kaleo aimed to showcase its pure and weighty music. The band played a number of slower, lamenting songs near the beginning of the show, while the crowd swayed and whispered along to the near-country jazz set list. All four artists were dressed modestly, sporting simple t-shirts and jeans â€“ except, of course, drummer David Antonsson Crivello, who wore a purple tiger robe until he realized that Milwaukee is not quite as chilly as Iceland.
The robe really came off when the group decided to take it up a notch, showing off its nearly flawless rock and roll thunder. The audience screamed and bounced up and down as they heard the opening abrupt chords to "No Good." What seemed at first to be a shy, reserved group of musicians colorfully burst into …Read more...