Last night (5/25/12) was an epic night for music at Mister Goodbar on Elmwood in Buffalo, when hometown favorites Funktional Flow joined forces for a co-headlining gig with Colorado’s, Smooth Money Gesture. If you were stopping into Goodbar for a drink last night, you had to have been seriously blown away by the musicianship on stage all night. First up, after a little van trouble, was Smooth Money Gesture out of Nederland, Colorado. Not letting the bad road luck slow them down, their soundcheck had many jaws already dropping, and when they finally kicked their set off, the place was rocking. These guys are a great mix of killer funk, shredding jam guitar, and at times, very bluesy, soulful vocals. After a few original tunes, the guys decided to bust out Blind Melon’s “Change,” for the first time ever, and they nailed it! They also played amazing versions of The Band’s “Ophelia” and The Temptation’s “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.”
Brothers Doug and Dan Diminico, playing Guitar and Bass respectively, have some incredible communication on stage, leading the band through many ripping jams and slowing it down a few times, allowing keyboardist Pete Goldberg to show his amazingly soulful voice, on top of his already outstanding presence on the keys. After introducing the next song, Carousel, off of their debut album “The Grand Scubian Evolution,” they proceeded to melt faces with Doug masterfully going from shredding guitar, to soft flowing jamming, with almost no effort, leaving the crowd in awe. Other tunes we got to hear SMG play during the night included Do What You Gotta Do, Shank You, Shakey Dun and an amazing Easy Street. For the last song of their set, drummer Cody Wales took the mic and instructed the people at the bar to come over to the stage, promising a dance party. At first only a few took up his offer, and as they hit the first notes of Peter Gabriel’s “Sledgehammer,” a few more headed our way. By the end of this absolutely funk-laden cover, the whole place was dancing, what a killer way to end their first show in Buffalo, gaining a bunch of new fans for sure! Now it was time to flow.
Funktional Flow opened their set up with a rocking version of ‘Puzzle Piece,’ with bassist Ben Whelan providing ample funk bombs throughout. This was their first official show with their new Saxophonist, Rob Browning, and he seemed very comfortable sharing the stage with these guys. They followed PP, with “Path Train”, a funky dance tune, with a raging jam at the end. Guitarist Jeff Kuebler sang the next one, an amazing cover of Sublime’s “Jailhouse” that really brought the crowd to life. Next, was a rockabilly-esque “Downtown,” followed by a killer “Walking Blind.” Next the guys offered up a raging “Mothman Chant,” with a slower tune, “Ocean’s in the Sky,” sandwiched between, with Whelan again beating his bass down hard, and Rob Browning adding the perfect touch on sax throughout.
The rage wasn’t finished, Flow threw down an absolutely blazing “F-Trance,” followed by another Kuebler led tune, “Mulligans,” bringing back some reggae feel. From “Mulligans,” they smoothly segued into some filthy funk with the tune “Bad Mama Jamma,” Jim Edgar on drums, along with Whelan on bass were chugging along like a freight train while the people on the floor were dancing like animals.
Browning again showed, he was absolutely the perfect fit during an amazing “Gunther the Sabretooth,” laying in some killer sax layers. They finished their set with a phenomenal take on Talking Head’s “Making Flippy Floppy,” an obvious crowd favorite. While we thought the show was over, It was not. They brought up multi-talented drummer from Smooth Money Gesture, Cody Wales, to provide vocals on the next medley of tunes. They segued from Cypress Hill’s “Hits From The Bong,” to Colt .45, into Lil Jon’s “Get Low,” back into Colt .45 with guitarist Jason Staniszewski lending a hand on vocals, and Wales scratching and beat-boxing flawlessly with his voice, amazing!
Another absolutely killer local show brought to us by Funktional Flow. If you aren’t out seeing these guys regularly, you don’t know what you’re missing, they get better every show!! Next weekend Funktional Flow will be heading to New York City to play Sullivan Hall. You can buy a copy of Funktional Flow’s self-titled debut album from iTunes, and download a FREE copy of Smooth Money Gesture’s debut album “The Grand Scubian Evolution” from their website, both linked below!