The Crux held a free show showcasing several bands including Pat “the Bunny” Schneeweis, Sole, and Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery on March 10.
Despite sharing a nickname with a child’s touch and feel book, Pat “the Bunny” Schneeweis is neither soft in lyrics nor nature. One of the defining members of the folk punk genre, Pat “the Bunny” Schneeweis is the lead singer of both Ramshackle Glory and Johnny Hobo and the Freight Train as well as being part of One Man Romance and Big Swamp Gospel.
After performances by other bands, looking rather rugged and a bit disheveled, Schneeweis appeared on stage and remarked that he was feeling sick.
“I was in the car sleeping five minutes before the show and I will be sleeping in the car five minutes after the show,” Schneeweis said.
Without any other explanation he began playing, bringing the energy in the room to boiling point.
Unlike previous acts of the night, which invited members of the audience to move in and out of the focus of the music, The Crux instantly stopped breathing in and out music connoisseur as fans of Pat and his bands’ work stacked and traded personal space to be inches closer to the stage.
Despite Schneeweis’s health, his music was strong and heartfelt. Although to be fair, it was hard to hear his voice over the clusters of fans screaming his lyrics in a way that was so harmonious with the rhyme that they could have been speaking from his lips and it would match perfectly, like a welldubbed film.
The performance climaxed at “Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of Your Fist” as various members of the audience pumped their fists in the air, and Schneeweis’s hair limp in front of his face shining in the bad lighting and reflection from various lighters waving back and forth from anonymous hands.
Catching many of the attendees by surprise was the level of talent that was wielded by Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery.
“It’s been an awesome experience to collect stories across the country that we’ve gotten to know over the last year,” Powell said.
With comments about their lyrics’ content and appreciations given to the attendees, Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery played a mix of slow melodies and fast indie folk, giving way to members of the audience dancing in a fluid but seemingly satiric style of kicker dancing.
Out of all the other acts, Powell and his two band members, Sam Richardson and Jacob Powell, were the most receptive to fan interaction, standing by their makeshift merch booth and casually chatting with whomever walked by. “So now that we’ve gotten this opportunity to play music and to see so much of the land, I hope to write a memoir that encapsulates what it’s like to be a working class independent musician in the postmodern music in America,” Powell said.
The first song of Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery’s second album is entitled “Jack Kerouac,” referencing the American novelist and poet:
“I feel like the spiritual little brother to Jack Kerouac because I look up to him and I love him but I watched him make mistakes and I try not to make the same ones,” Powell said.
“Man is Born for Trouble” (their second album) has a song entitled “Walt Whitman, and Leo Tolstoy” hinting at the other literary ideals Powell holds dear.
Sole also gave a very strong performance, and overall the night was packed with talent, and a large donation container was filled to the brim by the night’s end.