Fletcher’s Grove concludes 123 residency in style
Published: Friday, October 26, 2012
Updated: Friday, October 26, 2012 08:10
123 Pleasant Street was bumping and grooving Wednesday night as Fletcher’s Grove played alongside the electronic duo TronBLAST!
Dubbed Electro Grove for the event, the members of Fletcher’s Grove played their final show of the band’s four-week residency at 123 Pleasant Street. Each week, Fletcher’s Grove brought a different genre to the stage, which accentuated the diversity of styles and talent in their music.
The Grove’s partners in crime this week were TronBLAST!, bandmates Rocky McDonald (Grumpy Bear) and Jeremy Wriston (Ikto). If the name sounds familiar, it should – the two opened for MiM0SA for FallFest 2011.
"I feel like all of these nights has represented an extreme version of ourselves," said Fletcher’s Grove percussionist and vocalist Matt Marion. "I think all of these kind of fit into who we are. Each night we are focusing more on a genre that is part of our sound and trying to keep it different every show."
To the average person, the thought of a jam band with roots in rock, folk and bluegrass on stage with a pair of DJs with laptops and MIDI controllers would provide an awkward blend of competing styles.
"For TronBLAST!, I just say we do music that is heavily influenced in bass modulation and the way you use the bass to act as a percussive live instrument," Wriston said. "Honestly, we get up there and we are kind of making it up as we go."
The collaboration displayed blended funky bass lines, guitar riffs and their unique percussion with electronic beats and bass modulation to create an energetic atmosphere which the audience took advantage of with rabid dancing and moving.
The two groups covered songs such as Michael Jackson’s "Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’," as well as electronic-rock jam sessions, adding their special sound to the numbers and making sure the crowd stayed moving on their feet.
"I felt like the last couple weeks of practicing has been like being in my first band, trying to understand our roles and to fit into the mix," Fletcher’s Grove singer/guitarist Ryan Krofcheck said. "I’m nervous and excited."
Fletcher’s Grove and TronBLAST! began their relationship five years ago when both groups were doing what they could to infiltrate the Morgantown music scene.
"When they were starting out, we were actually playing at a lot of the same clubs like Octane, just trying to get our foot in the door, and it just kind of works well," Krofcheck said. "I see these guys out all the time, and I know we’ve been talking about the possibilities of what to come."
The first show of Fletcher’s Grove’s residency kicked off Oct. 3 with a show that most resembled "classic Fletcher’s." Though, when asked to nail down a description of what "classic Fletcher’s" is and sounds like, the members of the band laughed off any attempt to categorize themselves.
"It’s that own unique sound," Krofcheck said. "It is our sound; it’s the songs that make us. They are not really tailored to a specific genre."
Following their first show, Fletcher’s Grove performed with another West Virginia favorite, the Davisson Brothers Band, known for their country-rock and bluegrass sounds. The band, then unplugged as Shady Grove, played an acoustic set with the Rumpke Mountain Boys Oct. 17.
"I’ve been to every show they had here [in October] ... I watched their first show, it brought me to the second, and their second one brought me here," said WVU student Alex Cochran. "The reason I came this week is because they play everything but they play it all well. No matter what genre it’s in, it’s good."