Drummer Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket), guitarist Adrian Quesada (formerly of Grupo Fantasma) and guitarist and lead vocalist Dante Schwebel (City and Colour, formerly of Hacienda) make up the band Spanish Gold. Despite a meager showing crowd-wise, Spanish Gold hit Triple Rock Social Club in Minneapolis with an extremely solid set that included their entire recently released debut record, South of Nowhere, along with two covers. And they made it look easy.
Spanish Gold’s sound is very much a blend of each member’s musical history, and it works wonders. Patrick Hallahan laid down a perfect groove on the drums showing his rock and soul roots, while singer and guitarist Dante Schwebel drove home a 70s pop rock sound, not unlike his former Texas-based band Hacienda. With the addition of two female backup singers rounding out the vocals, and the thumping low-end by Nashville musician John Branch on bass, together Spanish Gold rocked a gleaming set.
Besides playing all of South of Nowhere, the band snuck in a nice sounding cover of “There Is Something In My Heart”—a tune that was originally recorded by Ghetto Brothers in 1971 and that Spanish Gold also released as a single this year on record store day. To end the performance, Schwebel warned the crowd that they were going to get funky. This was before the band busted into a very rocking and very groovy cover of Bell Biv DeVoe’s classic 1990 hit “Poison.”
For a band that will likely be nothing more than a side project, Spanish Gold quickly showed that they are musical veterans who together create a distinct organic sound that is well worthy of checking out. It’s too bad Minneapolis’ normally awesome music scene didn’t get the memo on this one, because it was a gem of a show. Here’s to hoping that Spanish Gold returns to the Twin Cities someday with a sophomore album.
Clear Plastic Masks opened the show.
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