Live Review: Fort Lean @ Black Cat, 5/2/12

It was definitely one of the most interesting bills I'd seen in a while, y'all. Whoever thought to put together some earnestly rocking Scots with emo tendencies (We Were Promised Jetpacks), well-coiffed Londoners with a slick case of the shimmies (Breton), and a bunch of hard sonic partiers from NYC should definitely be patted on the back. Somehow, that trio worked beautifully, and ended up being one hell of a show. Fort Lean, the New York part of that equation, was a big reason why I had such a daggum good time. 

They looked like fun, and lo and behold they were fun. The band navigated their way through a set filled with good time tunes, presenting quite the affable, amiable, all around likeable picture. The centerpiece was for sure singer/guitarist Keenan Mitchell, his leonine locks tailor-made for the traditional rock hair-tossing and rocking out he proved so prone to partaking in. Despite their serious rock chops, I found something almost precious about Fort Lean, perhaps because they all looked to be enjoying themselves so much up there on the Black Cat's mainstage.  There were smiles all over the place, and who doesn't like to see a band actually look like they love what they're doing?

At times, the vocals seemed to be tuned a smidge too high, though that could easily have been my ears and not the sound. "Sunsick," as expected, was triumphant, live wire that it is. It was super frenzied and dashed with precociously poppy undertones, proving just how seriously catchy a song it is. When their set ended I was taken aback. They were so fun to watch the songs just flew by. When they ended I had a smile on my face that lasted all night long. If you're lookin' for a party, y'all, look to Fort Lean to find what you need. 

  [photo by Megan Petty]


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