The Mirage – Skinny Lister with The Menders at Visulite
By: Molly Shores & Dianna Augustine | Photos Courtesy of The Menders
We love our local musicians, but sometimes we cannot provide coverage we hope for; so as to not disappoint we decided to get together and create a new column dedicated to those times we miss a show. Please take this satire with a grain of salt, enjoy the atmosphere of the show we are about to present. Some of this may or may not have happened at the recent Skinny Lister/The Menders show. Some is speculation, some are texts from friends at the show, some are what we have seen on various social media by the bands themselves — some is just our obtuse snarky personalities.
Charlotte-area band, The Menders
Molly: For the past year since I first learned about Gastonia’s The Menders, I have been trying everything I can to see the full unit live. I have only succeeded in seeing them (sans front-man Wes) during the 2014-15 New Year’s Eve celebration at Freeman’s Pub. Since then I have been in contact with Wes as much as I can in hopes of attending another gig, to no avail. This macabre-folk-lover’s heart is broken once more. The Menders weave mood and narrative into a cohesive live performance that enhances any buzz and sweetens any company. The night they opened for Skinny Lister, a band I know Wes enjoys so much, Dianna and I could not make it out for coverage. Well, that won’t stop us from bringing you any and all coverage that we can muster!
The stage was set for a historic night of music and camaraderie – fans eager for the show to start crowded the front of the stage. Unfortunately The Menders could not find their singer Wes Forbus anywhere. Drummer Phillip Anderson decided to run backstage, he found Wes looking for Lorna trying to get his new Skinny Lister shirt signed and they almost missed starting the show in time! Luckily. Phil stole the shirt from Wes and charged the stage almost knocking over his snare. Wes, in hot pursuit, ended up on the stage just as the spotlight hit him, frozen for seconds in confusion and proceeded to rip into the first of many sure-to-be hit songs. The crowd none-the-less wiser of what had just happened started to chant the chorus and broke in their new dancing shoes.
Seen and heard:
“I can’t drink another beer, if I drink another beer I’m going to sleep with you and we already know how that will turn out.” Girl hands guy her beer and tells him, “It’s fine, since we’ve already slept together, so I know not to expect much.” This was two songs into The Menders’ set.
Dianna: The Menders bring a blend of music and fun to Charlotte stages often and while we continually end up falling out of the shows for the flu, broken feet, and I’m sure was ebola laced flu cakes this past week. We still love this band, and want everyone to support them. Maybe next time I’ll jump in a bubble if ill and hope that I can just watch from side stage!
Skinny Lister has so much planned for the future of the tour, travelling home and abroad for the next two months. Their newest album, Down on Deptford Broadway, brings with it a profoundly great playlist for fans, new and old. At no point have I listened to this album and thought “this could be better,” at least not until we saw some footage of them live. This is a six-piece group; a collective whose energy comes together on stage in such a way that there really is no front-person.
Molly: The UK-style folk conjures a foreign but familiar love in me. So, when I heard they were playing with The Menders, the most close-to-home folk that I can think of, I made damn sure to plan around things and set out for this event. Things fell through, and I imagine that we missed one of the best shows of the year. If you like kickass, jovial folk, buy their albums here: Skinny Lister official website.
Had we been there, Dianna would have been crying at the front stage with her bleeding-heart love for this great group, having missed them so much, and knowing that the end of the night would come too soon.
Wes Forbus of The Menders openly admitted his adoration for Skinny Lister, which I sympathize with. He went on to send over this photo, as if to suggest that this beautiful image of them on stage was words enough for the overall feeling of the night. I can only imagine how much meaning is embedded within this image for him and the rest of The Menders.
Someone has to fight a bouncer – Dianna being the only sober person nearby, she’ll be the only one to remember that the fight started as soon as it ended, and the bouncer and brawler hugged it out during a modern drinking-song. Surely someone rested their iPhone on Dianna’s head for stability to get the fight while she was going for a wide angle shot.
Molly would get sucked into a vortex of really tall guys trying to make her drink and show them where the end of the rainbow is, while spilling beer all over her freshly-coined and well thought out notebook of quotes from the night.
As the show went on regardless of the numerous drunken brawls the band decided to tune it down a little by playing some new songs, to which tipsy fans could still attempt the lyrics to, surprisingly well like “Trouble on Oxford Street,” “Bonny Away” and “What Can I Say?”
Heard Through the Crowd:
“I GOT IT — I GOT IT!!!” Creepy up-skirt cellphone shot guy -moments later he refreshes his phone, realizing that the photo isn’t there.
“Apparently someone brought a box of moonshine and red lipstick backstage?” -Confused person also wanting moonshine
“Well, someone knows how to party…”
“I was hoping the double-bassist would crowd surf again with his bass, man!”
At the end of the night, everyone drinks, everyone parties everyone goes ape-shit for the best folk show hitting Charlotte in recent memory. While there were people kicked out, engagements broken off, light-rigs broken, proposals made, light-rigs fixed, an unexpected downpour, and dragons joining in on a mosh-pit— the show was nothing short of amazing, and anyone who missed it, like us, are shmucks.
Here’s Wes Forbus with a few true words about his night:
S16: You mentioned previously that you are already a fan of Skinny Lister, what was the highlight of performing the same gig?
Wes Forbus: Last night was fantastic!! We’re huge fans of Skinny Lister and being able to perform with them was an amazing experience. Their crowd was welcoming and treated us wonderful. I felt like we really connected with them and everyone enjoyed themselves. I think that was our favorite part.
S16: What were the two most memorable things that happened that night?
Wes Forbus: We’re a fairly young band in this formation, but we’ve been working really hard. I think one of the most memorable moments was walking out onto the stage. Sounds odd, but this was our first internationally touring act we opened for and the energy the crowd had was nonstop from the time we walked out till the time Skinny Lister played their last song!
Also just getting to hangout with the folks in Skinny Lister, they’re all really down to earth, and just good people. They’re damn good folks to have some drinks and laughs with!!
S16: Where can we find your recent releases?
Wes Forbus: Our acoustic EP will be on NoiseTrade as of tomorrow 9/20, for free!! And our self titled album (2014) you can purchase on iTunes, Amazon, CdBaby, or Google Play, or if you like having a hard copy you can pick those up on our Facebook store.
Stream Skinny Lister’s most recent album here.
Remaining Tour Dates:http://skinnylister.com/skinnyblog/live/