Friday night (5/14) The Slowdown was abuzz with the sweet sounds of rock and roll! Oh, how I missed loud guitars, pounding drums, and cheering crowds. As one of the first few post-pandemic shows for The Slowdown it was a great success. Over 150 people showed up to dance and sing to three bands all hailing from Lincoln, including A Band Called Hemingway, The Credentials, and headliners The Zooeys.
Each band had a unique style and their own set of crowd support. The first band up was “A Band Called Hemingway.” The lead singer mentioned that they started in 2016 at Doane college, but they hadn’t played a show for over three years. For being out of the game for over three years they still sounded pretty good! They had a more Emo/Pop-punk feel reminiscent of Taking Back Sunday meets All American Rejects. In between songs the singer asked if anyone in the crowd was from Doane and several folks in the back cheered. It was nice to see their long-time friends supporting the band after all the time away. Hemingway played about nine or ten songs before thanking everyone for coming out. If you missed them at this show you have another chance to catch them at The Slowdown on June 2.
Next up were The Credentials. These young gunslingers have the chops and the drive to really go far should they continue putting in the work. With one full length album Natural, already under their belts, they’re making plans to tour and are finishing the mastering on a second album!
I was able to catch The Credentials a few years back at the Waiting Room on a freezing Monday night. The crowd was a bit sparse given the harsh weather, but it didn’t stop The Credentials from rocking like it was a sold out arena. Ever since that show I’ve kept in touch and followed their socials looking for opportunities to catch them live.
As I mentioned above, all the bands were from Lincoln, so it was nice that The Credentials were able to play a show in my back yard this time. As the band took the stage a swarm of kids made their way to the front grabbing high fives from lead singer Everest and bass player Ronaldo. The kids came ready to rock and The Credentials were more than happy to oblige.
Serving up a mix of surfy garage-rock The Credentials whipped the crowd into a frenzy. The band played a mix of new and old songs and even did an instrument swap for the last few songs. Drummer Seth came out with a beautiful Gretsch guitar and took over on vocals while guitarist Taylor manned the drum kit. It was cool to see these guys have a range of talents when it comes to their playing.
Lead singer Everest played with the swagger of a low-key Mick Jagger while bassist Renaldo laid down some funky grooves. They played off each other’s energy exchanging laughs and bouncing around the stage. You could tell the positive vibes were flowing through the room. Make sure to give The Credentials a follow on Facebookand Instagram so you don’t miss the new album or future shows.
After The Credentials, headliners The Zooeys took the stage to fervent applause. A lot of the folks who were seated on the outside of the floor and in the balcony made their way to the front to catch all the action.
The Zooeys are a four piece with a range of styles. During their first few songs they sounded like a new take on classic rock with hints of The Who and Journey, but moving through the set they had some new wave synth type songs and then a punk rock banger reminiscent of Pennywise! The Zooeys lead singer (who oozed young Eddie Vedder vibes) mentioned “This is what we would sound like if we were a punk rock band. If you guys want to mosh, jump, or just let out a primal scream, do it!”. The crowd responded with some raucous dancing and jubilance.
The Zooeys played a good 12 or 13 mostly original songs during their set, but the personal highlight for me was a blazing cover of Jumpin Jack Flash. The dueling guitars blasted the crowd with delicious ear candy taking the set to another level.
After the show a lot of folks hung around to grab a setlist and pics with the band. There was a feeling in the air people were just happy to be at shows again, and I completely agree!
Being in a place with live music after being away for over a year was incredible. This was a great show back and we look forward to bringing even more local, regional, and national content as the year progresses. A big thanks to all the fans who have stuck with us through this crazy time. It’s hard to believe we’ve been at this for over 3 years now, but we look forward to an awesome summer of shows and many more years of providing local, regional, and national coverage!