Either there was a lot of strange girls out tonight, or Donavon Frankenreiter was selling fake moustaches at the merch desk. Thankfully, it was the latter as I walked into the Metro surrounded by a crowd full of bushy moustached people; quite the novelty!
We were there possibly a little too early, so by the time the support, Sticky Fingers started, I was definitely ready to listen to some music. Having never heard of them prior, their psychedelic sound got me interested. The vocalist had it down pat, a very distinct and engaging voice had me staying for the entire set from this band. An appropriate start to the night and a great choice of support for this DF show.
Of course, everyone was there to see Donavon so the room filled quickly between sets, a sea of moustaches ready to chill to some surf-rock. He strolled on stage so casually with his guitar like a true surfer dude and started off with 'Life, Love & Laughter', a good singalong to begin with and get everyone warmed up.
Followed by 'What 'Cha Know About' from his first, and probably most popular release, a self titled LP. This track finished with a long instrumental, showing Frankenreiter's skills on guitar and as a whole musician. You can just tell this guy feels the music and this is the way he lives his life. Considering the relaxed vibe to DF's tunes, the crowd were very loud and energetic. We heard other tracks 'Good Times' from the LP Pass It Around, also 'Move By Yourself' off the album of the same name and going back to the first release we were treated to 'Free', possibly the most chilled out song ever and a highlight track of the night.
Between songs, Donavon seemed to enjoy having one sip of a beer then proceeded to handing the almost full beer to an audience member in the front row. Front rowers were delighted to be getting free drinks from the songman and were probably getting all frothy in their moustaches. All of a sudden I can smell something, quite clearly the scent of a nice batch of grass, and yes looking forward into the crowd I can see a bloke smoking a joint, no security stopped him smoking inside the venue at all, he just smoked that whole joint like he were at home listening to Donnie in his bedroom. Meanwhile the whole of the Metro now smelt of weed, an adequate setting for a Frankenreiter show I think.
Between tracks there were interludes of jazzy piano from a very talented guy sitting at the keyboard on stage. He knew how to hit those keys and was clearly enjoying himself and getting right into this night, his piano solos were another highlight for me.
The end of the show was just getting better. DF performed 'Glow', his latest single, and first release off album of the same name. The addition of saxophone in some songs added a really cool jazzy touch and gave a different approach to how they are on record. Donavon brought out a friend for two songs, they sung a Frankenreiter song, then he gave Ryan the stage and let him sing one of his own and talk about cancer awareness, showing Donavon is a caring guy and doesn't mind bringing up these issues on stage.
Sticky Fingers returned to the stage to perform 'On My Mind' with Frankenreiter, a great touch to end the night. The song had a wholesome sound; there were about 10 people on stage, it was very cool. Seeing acts like Donavon Frankenreiter can sometimes get boring live and are better to listen to at home, but this show definitely had the dynamics to impress all and sent the crowd home all wanting to grow real moustaches….