This past Friday night, Funktional Flow kicked off the weekend with a bang in Hamburg at their old stomping grounds, Limerick’s Lake View Pub on Southwestern Blvd. Despite being unprofessionally double-booked by DBGB’s on Allen Street in Buffalo, then having to move their gig, last minute, out to Hamburg, Flow still brought the heat! This was also RJ Acanfora’s first official gig as a full time member of Funktional Flow, also sharing time as a member of Slip Madigan, another great local band. RJ has sat in a few times with the band before, but tonight was certainly something special. They kicked right off with a blazing cover of “Making Flippy Floppy” by Talking Heads, with Acanfora starting the show off on the kit and absolutely crushing it. Flippy Floppy also featured an epic prolonged jam to finish it out. After a great version of “Elephant” they rolled into a completely mind blowing “Path Train,” a raging Flow original with Jim Edgar on the kit chugging away with the quickness of said Path Train. They get tighter every time out with this song, and this one was a serious smoker. Following another great original “Puzzle Piece,” another song where the rhythm section shines, comprised of Edgar on drums and bassist Ben Whelan dropping sliding bass bombs, was “Mothman Chant” with “The Road” sandwiched in between. During the first half of “Mothman” saxophonist Rob Browning took off on an amazing solo, taking the older Flow original to a whole new level. While bassist Whelan and guitarist/singer Jason Staniszewski lead a ripping jam, they smoothly segued into a warmly welcomed version of “The Road,” another Flow tune thought to possibly be shelved for a short time, as I haven’t seen it much in the last batch of shows. After finishing out “Mothman,” Flow slid right into a cover of the segment at the end of “Buster,” by Buffalo Jam Godfathers moe. This jam almost defies words as Funktional Flow absolutely blew the doors off the bar. Jim Edgar killing it on drums, singer/songwriter Jeff Kuebler shredding hard on his guitar and RJ Acanfora adding that last little bit of fullness to the jam, in what can only described as the absolute peak so far in Flow’s quick rise. After a Kuebler led reggae tune “Mulligans,” the guys invited guitarist from theCAUSE, Eric Weingrad, to join them for “Dying Man.” Weingrad added in great guitar layers to an already great jam, along with an outstanding solo.
Browning was again killing it on sax, showing his improvement more every show. Flow then invited out the keyboard genius from theCAUSE and they launched into Grateful Dead classic “Viola Lee Blues.” The rhythm section, Whelan, Edgar and Acanfora held a good portion of the jam down tight, giving way for all 3 guitarists to shine individually, with Whelan bringing the funk towards the end. Finishing out the show, RJ Acanfora took back over on the main kit, and the guys went into Kuebler original, “Jack.” “Jack” is an upbeat, good old Irish sounding drinking tune, that’s almost Flogging Molly-esque, which features an awesome jam to end it. What a great night of music with theCAUSE out of Pittsburgh, following Funktional Flow with some very well played Grateful Dead covers. theCAUSE returned the favor from earlier in the night by having Funktional Flow guitarist Jason Staniszewski sit in for Going Down The Road Feeling Bad>Turn On Your Lovelight during their set. Funktional Flow pulled together last minute to turn an unfortunately bad “Double Booking” situation, into another amazing night of music! The following night at Toadfest 7, in South Wales, NY was no different, with outstanding music late into the night from Slip Madigan, Funktional Flow, The MKG’s, Universe Shark and Imperial Brown. Check back soon to BuffaloJams for Reviews and Photo Galleries from that event as well.