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The Greyhound

Triple threat: Musical night at Ram’s Head

As a result of an impromptu and very last minute decision, I found myself seeking solace from the cold in a concert venue tucked within the hubbub that is Power Plant Live! The night brought fairly new duo Junior Prom, Hunter Hunted and headliner Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, all for just $30.

The Junior Prom duo, Mark Solomich and Erik Ratensperger, hail from the Big Apple and are fairly new to the music scene, though you wouldn’t know it from listening to them. Clad in all black, the two jammed out on stage like they’ve been doing just that their whole lives. It’s surprising that their first release, a self-titled EP, has only been out since February of this year.

Even with their impressive performance on stage, the guys either know they’re still starting out or their egos haven’t blown up quite yet because they stuck around by one of Rams Head’s five bars to meet with their audience. That might not be the case for long, though. The duo was recently featured on Nylon Magazine’s site, which goes to show they’re moving up the musical success ladder at a steady rate.

While we waited for the next set to start, we wandered around the intimate venue on its ground floor as well as its stage-overlooking balcony searching for the best view. We settled on a spot towards the left of the stage. Rams Head is a brilliant venue because it holds an intimate feel while providing enough space (standing-room only) to not get too-close-for-comfort to the other attendees.

Hunter Hunted, a group from Los Angeles, is in the process of recording their first full-length album. Though they’ve also only yet released a self-titled EP, that was over a year ago and they’ve made a name for themselves on numerous up-and-comer lists. The group’s set was short, but memorable. Their sound is crisp and distinct-—no wonder they’ve made so much progress in so little time. With their indie rock/synth-pop, they’ve certainly got that west-coast vibe going on.

The band members are really down-to-earth (I got to meet them, too, and snap a pic together) and it’s clear they’re in it for the love of the music.

Before the final song in their set, lead singer Garner said a few words about how it’s been incredible for them to tour with Andrew McMahon and that the band is just as big fans of him as everyone who comes to the shows. They were later jamming out in the crowd to McMahon’s performance with everyone else.

It was finally time for McMahon to take the stage. Though only recently performing solo under his own name, you probably already know the guy. He started out way back with Something Corporate, before creating Jack’s Mannequin in 2004. Now McMahon is performing simply as himself, though still monikered, as Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness.

He took the stage and right off the bat played fan favorite, “Dark Blue,” from Jack’s Mannequin first album. Throughout his set, the singer/songwriter jumped around, playing a mix of new and old to keep it interesting. In true McMahon fashion, he ended the night banging on the keys of his piano and in a grand finale, hopped on top of the instrument to stand and sing out the end of his last song. It was epic; it was full of energy; it was Andrew McMahon in fine form.

Rams Head never disappoints and on whim, I got to enjoy three amazing bands for $30 on a crisp Friday night in Charm City. What could be better?

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Triple threat: Musical night at Ram’s Head