The Bard Chronicles: Nico Vega and Crash Kings at The Griffin 7/11/13

The last time I saw Nico Vega in San Diego was at the Casbah to a relatively rowdy crowd but it was by no means a sold out show. They did tour through here with Imagine Dragons playing the SDSU Open Air Theater but I didn’t attend that show.

Crash Kings have playing down at Griffin off and on during the year and I’ve noticed two separate shows there that I was unable to attend. Sad Amanda. Even sadder because I hadn’t seen them play in well over a year.

So what happens when you take two popular LA bands who are friends that even share a rehearsal space and you put them on the road together? In a word, amazingness.

Watching Crash Kings play for the first time in over a year was like no time had passed. Despite having a different drummer, their set was filled with the same enthusiasm as the first time I saw them years ago. And I had honestly forgotten how much that clavinet will rock a room. It was so refreshing to see a band rock out with a piano, keys, and a clavinet. I didn’t even miss the guitar.

It was fantastic to see them rock old favorite like “Mountain Man”, “It’s Only Wednesday,” and “14 Arms.”   Their set was a nice blend of old and new tunes and I have to tell you, those new tunes are awesome. Their set was so awesome, it inspired an encore because the crowd just wouldn’t stop yelling for them. You should really do yourself a favor and go pick up Dark of the Daylight  now.

Nico Vega is an amazing band. And you can tell they are fully on their A Game after having toured all over with Imagine Dragons earlier this year. They are tighter than I’ve ever seen them and somehow even more dynamic than before. Maybe it’s the drums. The tiny stage was hardly big enough to contain them as evidenced by only one painted barrel on stage and Aja’s continual departure from the stage.

At one point during the set, someone yelled for them to play “Wooden Dolls” and the band all sat down on the stage and quietly played the song. I should also mention that one of the barrels was dedicated to an audience member’s deceased pet turtle and Aja informed the crowd that she would be taking it home with her after the show. How sweet! What was even sweeter was seeing other old favorites like “Gravity” and “Beast” mixed in with all the snazzy new tunes from their forthcoming album Lead to Light . If you love Nico Vega or just want some cool stuff from them (their designs are rad) then you should pledge your support here. I’m personally getting a shirt and the font that is Rich’s handwriting.


Check out more pics in the gallery below!

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