Dads and The Moms command the Rat stage

By Kimberly Ilkowski
Review Editor

It was a family affair at the Rathskeller on Friday, Oct. 10, where the musical forces of Dads combined with The Moms for an evening of indie rock.

New Jersey drunk-punk trio The Moms started off the night channeling its rough and rugged style through its music and appearance, donning torn-up T-shirts and thick facial hair.

The bands rage-filled set was led by vocalist and guitarist Joseph Nester, bassist Jonathan Stople and drummer Donny Saraceno.

The night’s songs included “Arrest Me” off the 2013 “Viva!” EP as well as “Blow Me” and  “NJ Transit Blues” off the 2014 “Blow Me” EP.

With such provocative titles, it was clear from early on in the set that the band is out to make a statement. According to its Facebook page, “the genre-bending album’s socially-charged prose touches upon subjects such as prescription drug abuse, private bomb brokers, joining the navy and the potential for a better post-apocalyptic U.S.A.”

The Moms are embarking on an extensive fall tour across the country with Everything Ever in support of it’s first full length album “Buy American,” which was released last month on Paper & Plastick Records.

In stark contrast to the night’s loud, in-your-face opening act, the indie, emo duo, Dads, were next to take the stage.

The noticeably darker set — in feeling and in lighting — began with an ambient opening track with moody bass and cricket chirps.

Following the first few slow songs, the band, comprised of John Bradley on vocals and drums and Scott Scharinger on guitar, picked up the pace with faster tracks featuring skilled instrumental solos.

The rest of the band’s set followed suit, shifting from sweet to sour, hard to soft and dark to light. The band toyed with audience members’ heart-strings with gentle melancholic guitars then smacked them in the face with pounding drums.

Dads’ engaging performance was resemblant to the indie rock band The World Is A Beautiful Place And I Am No Longer Afraid To Die, back when they played a similar style of music at the Rat in March.

Not only did Bradley impress students by seemingly effortlessly drumming and singing at the safe time, but also seemed to speak to them in a cryptic manner — often adding in an existential lament like, “there’s no explanation for life,” before smashing his cymbals and starting a new song.

The band recently released a full-length album “I’ll Be The Tornado,” which came out last Tuesday through 6131 Records and will be touring around the country with Tiny Moving Parts, Nai Harvest and Choir Vandals this fall.

Former student at the College John Wolf stuck his claim in the front row all night, bobbing his head and yelling along.

“The Moms and Dads are two of my favorite bands, so it was awesome to see them play together,” Wolf said after the show. “My voice has never been so sore from singing lyrics so loudly.”

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The Moms song lyrics highlight controversial issues. (Kyle Bennion / Photo Editor)
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Dads debut dramatic new music for students in the Rat. (Kyle Bennion / Photo Editor)