Both Aqueous and Mungion have been racking up accolades in their respective musical realms for quite some time now. A new era of jam is fueling the post-livetronica scene by creating a novel hybrid. Focusing on snappy breakbeats and tight snare hits this new “jamband” is fully capable of overlaying enchanting, deep melodies and interwoven vocals on top of anything. They have all the tools of a nostalgic time in music lead by the likes of Phish, moe. and Widespread Panic alongside all the modern gadgetry for mixing and mashing sound. What we are left with is something fresh yet familiar. I would say both Aqueous and Mungion fall into this category as they follow the musical breadcrumbs left by Twiddle and Spafford to great success.
Mungion took the stage just after 8:15 PM and played a very tight one hour set. They joined Aqueous for an East Coast tour leg that lasted eight nights starting in Connecticut and ending in Philly. This was their second jaunt to wrap up Fall Tour with Aqueous and Hodi’s was the first of four nights together in the Centennial State. They opened with the hypnotic “One Night Stan.”
Mungion has heavy duty chops. The quartet has really have risen up to represent the Midwest in modern jam. Their story is not unlike Umphrey’s McGee’s (aka The Last Jamband) rise to stardom in the early Aughts. Mungion has weathered a lineup change or two, but they seems to have emerged stronger. They treated fans to a wide ranges of styles including the at times silly but beautifully composed “Nuthead” as well as the deeply spacey prog rock tune “Born from a Compass.” They closed the set with s song that sounds like STS9 and George Clinton had a love child raised solely on dirty funk entitled “Myrtle.”
Aqueous has quickly risen to headliner status in pretty short order. They are now sharing their success with Mungion and on and on it goes. While Mungion was on for a total of 13 shows, Aqueous has been on a ridiculous tour supporting the new album lasting 34 dates and spanning the bulk country. Their four night run in Colorado took them from the Front Range to the Rockies and back again. They have continued to polish their style of relentless jam, blissful vocals and razor thing transitions. Aqueous opened their two set show with the dark rager “Gordon’s Mule.”
Musically Aqueous has a commanding sound and their fans are gung ho. Fresh off the release of their latest album Color Wheel, Aqueous seems energized and ready to push their shows to the next level. Lead guitarist and vocalist Mike Gantzer is simply mesmerizing. He was front and center on “The Median” a progressive rock tune reminiscent of early Umphrey’s McGee. Dave Loss took over vocal duties on the trance-y “Realize Your Light” as well as the rocking reggae dance party “Dave’s Song.”“Mandela Effect” was our first taste of the new tunes, but more was on the way in set two. They closed with an epic version of Led Zeppelin’s “No Quarter.”
Aqueous began their second set with a pair of recent tunes “Weight of the World” and “Good Enough.” During the opening number drummer Rob Houk’s bass drum head exploded and he had to grab some tools and get to work. Ironically the same thing would happen at their show at the Fox Theater in Boulder. Excuse me while I go by stock in drum heads. During those technical issues fans were treated to a nice back and forth jam between Mike and Dave. The highlight of the show came with the funky “Aldehyde” sandwich that featured a bust out of ZZ Top’s “Cheap Sunglasses” to wrap up the second set. This segue demonstrated some of the deepest and most proficient jamming of the evening. They returned for a quick encore with “Say It Again.”
The time is now. Both of these bands while still formative are rapidly becoming quite popular and capable of selling out shows nationwide. These are the early days; the shows that will become part of the legend. This run in Colorado was absolutely stellar and just a few days after departing Colorado, Aqueous has already announced another headlining run in February with Big Something. It’s all happening right now. So buckle up kids, this is not your grandpappy’s jamband. Aqueous and Mungion are poised to take this scene by storm. Don’t miss it.