Live Review from The Underground 13th Year Anniversary Party:
2. Show Time
6. If You Like Music
7. Make It Happen
It’s hard to nail down exactly what Ocean Boulevard’s style is. Like a lot of beautiful things in this world, sometimes it’s best not to always go looking for a label and just let it be whatever it is. But it took them a couple of songs to show ‘it’ to us completely. It’s clear to me that lead guitarist Rico spent most of his childhood listening to Carlos Santana, because it’s like the man is here with us now such is the similarity with his guitar riffs. There’s a hell of a contrast on third offering Indigo. The Santana-esque guitar, keyboard synths, Cecillia’s jazzy vocal, simple percussion and the funky bass.
Southern is a much more sultry song and all of a sudden everything clicks. And I totally get it. Its got a latin feel with old school Canto flavours coming out in places. I can really see this song being played in a nice hotel bar with low light. Beautiful. They’re like a different band to the first two songs.
They style themselves as Tropical Rock, which I have to say does feel like the right label for them. Fifth song of the night is Samba and it’s just all about fun. The whole place is dancing now, they’ve truly won this crowd tonight. At times I feel like the song is going to take a turn into Copacobana by Barry Manilow. Cecillia is nailing it now, looking completely at ease and working the stage.
They see to take it upon themselves to do an encore, without giving the crowd much of a chance to ask for one. Pretty sure they would have anyway. Make It Happen starts off near exactly the same as Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson. Rico joins in on vocals which gives the song a B52s feel.
They’ve been so much fun. The crowd are still buzzing. If I could I’d book them for a birthday party, because at a birthday party you want your guests to have a good time and Ocean Boulevard could absolutely guarantee it.
– Simon Donald Jones