Sweet Crude and Tank and The Bangas @ Basement East in Nashville, TN
Review & Photography by: Laurel Williams
I love listening to podcasts while I drive. One summer day, I put on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts to keep me going on a long trip through the desert. A few episodes in, I heard Tank and the Bangas for the first time. I immediately perked up when I heard a punchy flute line break through the silence. A few seconds into Boxes and Squares, I remember thinking to myself, “What IS this?” and I was immediately enamored. So its fair to say- I have listened to Tank and the Bangas’ Tiny Desk an absurd amount of times, and I was thrilled to see their show announced (and sold out) in Nashville.
Last Thursday, they played at the Basement East, a midsize bar and one of my favorite venues in town. Their fellow New Orleans natives Sweet Crude opened the show. They were bursting with energy- jumping, dancing, and switching instruments every couple of songs. With their equally theatrical and whimsical stage presence, Sweet Crude took the crowd along for a ride. The shouts of “Sing it, girl!” and “ I FEEL her!” grew more and more numerous as their set progressed. Tank and the Bangas rode this rising energy as they started their set. I felt the floor shake from the crowd’s dancing, and the whole room heated up. The songs featured on their Tiny Desk Concert were crowd favorites- greeted with screams at each recognizable intro. Their new single Smoke.Netflix.Chill also had most of the crowd singing along. The best words I can think of to capture the experience are overwhelming joy- the constant dancing and exuberant energy made the night feel almost magical.
Tank and the Bangas: