There's something inherently funny about a surf-rock band based out of a landlocked state like Indiana, but The Madeira go about their business like they're masters of the beach. Last December, the Indianapolis quartet recorded a 20-track live album at the Melody Inn. The hour-plus recording features a lot of fan favorites, some new tracks and infectious energy throughout.
The Madeira were looking for a way to celebrate the band's upcoming 10-year anniversary. Low on material for a new album, guitarist Patrick O'Conner suggested going all out with a live recording at the beloved Melody Inn, headlining two consecutive Punk Rock Nights. And thus Sonic Cataclysm was conceived. As for the actual recording, after a brief introduction, "Tribal Fury" hits your ears with tantalizing riffs with the reverb setting the mood for the rest of the listen. There's no slowing down for The Madeira, as drummer Dane Carter unleashes the fury on the breakneck "Everybody Up!" and unreleased track "Mar Vista."
The exotic aura of "Jungle Drums" is intoxicating, while the easy-going "Tangaroa" is paced by lead guitarist Ivan Pongracic's luscious licks. But overall, Sonic Cataclysm is a showcase of The Madeira's total control of this underground genre. Songs like "Wreck Havoc!" and "Farthest Shore" illustrate the band's incredible attention to detail and the urgency within their musicianship. Pongracic and O'Conner are expert players (check out "Surf Fidelis" and "Night Rider" for proof), while Carter and bassist Todd Fortier provide backbone and buoyancy ("Sandstorm" and "Witch Doctor"). The dazzling "Caravela" absolutely will get your entire body moving and the atmospheric "Cities of Gold" exhibits Pongracic's extraordinary guitar picking.
One doesn't have to be an expert on the genre to really enjoy or get what The Madeira are doing. Even ocean-haters will fall under the spell of the six-minute "Intruder." The song dips and rises with ease, ripping off some incredible riffs that'll have listeners searching for the city's nearest surfboard shop.
The Madeira with The Volcanos and The Mystery Men, Melody Inn, 3826 N. Illinois St., Saturday, June 14, 9 p.m., $6, 21+
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