The Boggs

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The Boggs

Red Room, Wednesday 13 It must be heartbreaking to travel halfway across the country for a major showcase and then have a sound system not cooperate. That's exactly what happened to the Boggs. A Brooklyn quartet that takes its name from legendary folksinger/banjo player Dock Boggs, they attempt old-time music with a youthful, energetic slant. But this gig was undermined by serious sound problems. First, it took 20 minutes for the microphones and monitors to produce any sound. Then feedback intervened throughout the set, which was unjustly abbreviated. If the band had an elaborate set-up, the difficulties would have been understandable. But the Boggs play banjo and guitars, backed with a full drum kit. The drums overpowered the other instruments and the vocals were all but unintelligible throughout. At times, one could almost tell they were striving for a gothic sound similar to that of 16 Horsepower or Nick Cave. There was even a brief moment near the end when it seemed like it was all going to come together in one glorious frenzy of noise. But it didn't last. When it was over, lead singer Jason Friedman had a look of bitter anguish in his eyes and one couldn't help but feel his pain.

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