‘Oooktails’ ignite stage at WTSR concert

College students were faced with the ultimate conundrum last Wednesday night: whether to attend a night of comedy or music.

Those who attended The Molotov Cocktails concert, sponsored by WTSR and held in the Kendall Hall television studio, were delighted when they were treated to both.

The Molotov Cocktails, or the Molotov “Oooktails” as they jokingly referred to themselves throughout the night (the band’s slogan, “cock rock,” had to be made TV friendly), gave a tremendous performance despite their sustained technical difficulties.

The band opened with “Do You Think You Can Save Me,” the title track of their recently released album. After completing what was an incredible introduction, the band experienced unrelenting problems with percussion, which eventually escalated to a completely shattered snare drum, cutting the night short.

Drummer Tyler Yesse’s custom snare drum broke early in the performance when a wire suspending the snare mechanism snapped. The drum’s well-worn head also broke late into the set.

Although these problems disrupted the organization of their performance, the band adapted and continued with other tracks off their new album, such as “Fifteen Dollars, Pour the Pitcher,” “Kiss You Everywhere” and “To Make It Clot or Let It Bleed.” The band also introduced two new songs, “It’s a Trap” and “Loser in Love” to the enthusiastic audience.

The band, consisting of singer/songwriter Adam Streicher, bassist Steve Mariani and Yesse on drums, is known for delivering the goods, having claimed first place in last semester’s WTSR Battle of the Bands and performing in The Bamboozle 2008, the Jersey-based punk and alternative rock festival.

The studio echoed with dynamic, intense rhythm, epitomized by the zealous nature of the musicians known for their poise and passion for girl pants.

Witticisms and constant commentary from the band members countered the unexpected difficulties of the night, leaving the audience in stitches.

Streicher interjected between and during songs to ease tension, informing the audience, “I am a spelling major.”

When asked how they would characterize their innovative, fresh sound, Streicher said, “We like to call it tragedy. Tragedy rock. But not in the emo way. Tragedy actually happens onstage.”

The band attributes much of their sound to the influence of bands like The Beatles, Incubus, Ted Leo, Foo Fighters, Panic at the Disco, Jet, My Chemical Romance and Weezer, but their style is entirely of their own creation.

“How you sound is different than who you’re influenced by. I’m really influenced by The Beatles but I don’t sound like The Beatles,” Streicher said.

After Yesse broke the head of his problematic snare drum, Streicher concluded the performance with a solo acoustic performance of “To Make It Clot Or Let It Bleed.”

While the night was unfortunately cut short, The Molotov Cocktails delivered an entertaining performance true to their name: It was explosive.