I WAS THERE . . . Nomo at Zebulon 7/12/08
July 12, 2008
So many people came to Zebulon to see Nomo Saturday night, they literally had to turn people away. For those who managed to squeeze themselves into the cramped Williamsburg venue, they were not disappointed. Nomo brought an uncontrollably infectious energy to the stage, their favorite club in the city. Throughout their first set, the crowd seemed not to know what to make of them. People simply sat in awe trying to comprehend the complex sounds emanating from the seven-piece ensemble. That all changed during the second set when the crowd thinned out a bit, and the remaining concert-goers got up and danced like they knew they should.
Hailing from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Nomo fuse dubbed out 80’s hip-hop synths with Tony Allen afro-funk drums and hard bop jazz horn lines. Even their ensemble arrangement is unique featuring two drum sets, electric bass, guitar, tenor and baritone saxophones, two trumpets, congas, timbales, bells, mbira (Zimbabwean thumb piano), sea shells, and a combination of electric distortion effects.
Ghost Rock, Nomo’s third full-length album came out last month on Ubiquity Records, and they’re touring across the country promoting it, playing 34 shows in 55 days in 32 cities. They are without a doubt, one of the most inventive, talented bands I’ve ever had the privilege of seeing live. After listening to their records for the first time in the last six months, I had extremely high expectations for their show Saturday night, and they totally blew them away.