Spoons, stomps and claps are just a few of the raw ingredients integrated into Bronze Radio Returns’ body-swaying songs. Loosely forming in 2008 under lead vocalist and guitarist Chris Henderson, Bronze Radio Return now includes six members, most of whom met while attending the prestigious Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. Touring now on their sophomore LP, last year’s SHAKE! SHAKE SHAKE!, Bronze Radio Return already boasts a number of triumphs under their belt. Just two years after getting together, the band was chosen to represent Connecticut ‘s music scene—yes, the entire state—by way of a performance for President Barack Obama in Bridgeport. Kind of a big deal. And ever since Nissan picked up their album’s warm, effortless title track for the Nissan Leaf’s global campaign, BRR’s seen a spike in attention from all over the world. “It’s really exciting to see people taking the time to see what the song was on the commercial,” bassist Bob Tanen says. We think that’s damn cool, too.
But what’s especially unique about the band’s blues-gone-modern SHAKE! SHAKE SHAKE! is the way it was produced. Almost every instrument used in its making was lent to the band from the supportive and excited community of Norman, Oklahoma. Now, that’s love!
For each record, BRR strives to escape the confines of New England and branch into different areas to perfect their sound. This time? A remote barn-turned-studio in the farmlands of Virginia served as home, where BRR spent six weeks with chickens and cows hashing it out. “It was really interesting for this one,” Tanen confessed, “’cause we spent the most time we ever spent on a record, and we just sorta bunkered in. Truly, completely isolated.”
There’s no doubt BRR’s strong, harmonic vocals and heartening melodies created with a couple guitars, a bass, some drums, a banjo and even sometimes a harmonica make for the kind of music you blast in your convertible—top-down of course. But since it’s winter on the East Coast, we recommend vibin’ with Bronze Radio Return in a warm venue with a cold beer. Although this tour is mostly devoted to SHAKE! SHAKE SHAKE!, Tanen says, fans at Friday’s show in Wilmington are likely to get a taste of the still-unreleased tracks from their upcoming third album, along with the band’s older songs. CAROLINE NEWTON
Fri., Dec. 14. 8 pm. $16-$19.World Cafe Live at the Queen. 500 N. Market St., Wilmington, DE. 302.994.1400. queentickets.worldcafelive.com