Deer Tick is fucking awesome. The Rhode Island indie rock quintet—whose music ranges from country to soul to frat rock—had the packed house in awe during their 100-minute-plus performance. Lead singer John McCauley has one of those voices that is perfect for loud, raw guitar-driven rock music. And he displayed it on sing-alongs “The Bump,” “Walking Out the Door” and “Main Street.” His talents also include songwriting, guitar strumming and the ability to down copious amounts of alcohol, if the huge bucket of beers onstage was any indication. Additionally, the entire band was tight. Rob Crowell impressed on keyboards and nailed the saxophone. And drummer Dennis Ryan enhanced every song with unique fills and style. Among the chestnuts they covered, the Replacements’ “Bastards of Young” was a fist-pumper, and the music from the original Super Mario Bros. was an unexpected joy. This was a party, and Deer Tick was the perfect party band.
Also deserving praise was supporting act Dusty Sunshine, which is composed of players from beloved local bands: The Clydesdale, A Crowd of Small Adventures, the Petals and Rubiks Hotel. They were celebrating the release of their eponymous debut album, which features “Veins” and Before we Rise.” Their set was impressive, and it showed that their new album is a promising next step for this six-piece indie group.