Each Thursday in December, we’ll peek over the fence to 2023 and a unique event to look forward to in the new year.
What: Tribute to The Cranberries with Violet and the Undercurrents
When: Saturday, Feb. 4
Where: The Blue Note, 17 N. Ninth St.
What’s worth looking forward: From gauzy, romantic anthems that lingered in listeners’ daydreams to visceral, can’t-turn-away rockers detailing the politics of their native Ireland, The Cranberries captured collective attention beginning with their 1993 debut “Everybody Else is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?”
“Combining the melodic jangle of post-Smiths indie guitar pop with the lilting, trance-inducing sonic textures of late-’80s dream pop and adding a slight Celtic tint, the Cranberries became one of the more successful groups to emerge from the pre-Brit-pop indie scene of the early ’90s,” Stephen Thomas Erlewine wrote for AllMusic.
Indeed, the ’90s were good to the band with three multi-platinum records and another gold release. The Cranberries’ elegiac rock continued to make waves until powerhouse singer Dolores O’Riordan’s death in 2018, her ever-haunting vocals only becoming more so.
If any mid-Missouri band can inhabit the Cranberries catalog, it’s Violet and the Undercurrents. Singer Violet Vonder Haar’s voice is distinct from O’Riordan’s, yet also is remarkably expressive, able to convey more than one mood in a single syllable. The band’s rhythm section — drummer Phylshawn Johnson and bassist Linda Bott — is supremely versatile, able to deliver the nuance in a Cranberries ballad and replicate the crunch of their heavier songs.
The prospect of hearing “Dreams” or “When You’re Gone” in the band’s hands is exciting. Throw in an opening set from DJ Note Girl — aka Roots N Blues co-owner Tracy Lane, who also owns impeccable musical taste — and a great evening is promised.
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