Live Review: Pickwick

Dec. 15
Wild Buffalo

Following a huge weekend of music at the Wild Buffalo, Bellingham was ready to close it out with a special show from Seattle’s Rose Windows and Pickwick. Unforunately, just hours prior to the show, Rose Windows cancelled, leaving the night with only one live band and DJ Yogoman getting the crowd warmed up.
After Yogoman did his thing, Pickwick took the stage. The group was at times, frantic, though not completely out of control, but just enough to make you want to move. To make you appreciate being alive, your ability to move in the first place. They started slow, but as the show went on the band and the audience both seemed to achieve a form of organic ecstasy. Everyone vibrating and gyrating to the eclectic noises coming from the purple lit stage. Lead singer, Galen Disston, looked as though it pained him to be there (or anywhere) which made the audience dig him that that much more. His tremendous voice reminded me of the time when Jazz and Blues reigned supreme. Someone you would hear in a smalltime local club in New York in 1950 through a fog of cigarette smoke. The sorrow in his voice made us feel sorry. Then, falsetto. Garret Parker used his bass to carry the melody like a breeze would carry a leaf. Leaving your head nodding in what would otherwise be classified as dead time. Cassidy Lilstrom and his synth take the R&B sounds of the past and gives the music a feel of a future we may already be in. Smooth notes turned into growls, grunts and clean rhythm turned into organized chaos, before going back into what would be assumed was the original structure of the song. By the last tune the audience was moving in unison.
They leave expecting a curtain call, they get what they wanted. The encore lacked the climatic energy I was hoping for but that’s not due to the drummer, who vigorously lead the rhythm like a heartbeat everyone couldn’t help but feel. Then, “thank you guys be safe, we’ll see you again,” and they were gone.
–Zach Barlow