The Rooks Take On Bucknell at Campus Vinyl’s Concert At Uptown


On Saturday November 15, Campus Vinyl had the pleasure of hosting The Rooks with supporting acts by student bands HMS Pinafore, The Thought Police, and The Buck’s Orchestra. The show took place at Uptown, a comfortable venue for a night with close friends and a fantastic lineup of musicians. The night started off with opening act The Buck’s Orchestra, a jazz band on campus founded by Elliot Puplett. The band played a diverse collection of songs—both new and old—with their own classy jazz style that had the audience moving their hips. Between the strong brass section, the sophisticated touch of the keyboard, smooth drum beats, and the powerful vocals, every section of the band had something appealing to contribute to its overall lively and fun sound. And watch out Meghan Trainor, because the band’s mellow cover of “All About That Bass”, featuring vocals by Zoe Russell and a tuba solo by Peter Jahl, was just as good as the original. Overall, I’d say The Buck’s Orchestra did a successful job at reminding the crowd that “it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing.”

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The Buck’s Orchestra

Once The Bucks were finished, the Thought Police came on and started to jam. The band opened their set with a cover of Jet’s “Are You Gonna Be My Girl”, which got all of Uptown rocking out. The band mixed up their rock sound with some more laid-back songs, and some more upbeat and wild. Towards the end of their set, the band played “Dani California” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, a classic cover choice that they absolutely nailed. Excellent harmony vocals between Jake Perlmutter and Andrew Kilman, backed by solid guitar playing, sweet bass lines, and strong drum beats led the Thought Police to get the whole place fired up.

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The Thought Police

Followed by the Thought Police was HMS Pinafore. HMS Pinafore, in addition to sounding great, demonstrated incredible musical versatility as the members switched instruments several times throughout their set. It’s also worth a mention that the band’s vocalist/guitarist/bassist Andrew Kilman also performed in the Thought Police, proving his profound devotion to the Bucknell music scene. The band’s rad guitar solos and funky bass lines made for a half hour of pure fun.

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HMS Pinafore

Finally, The Rooks came on and were ready to melt some faces. The Rooks are a six-piece R&B Indie-soul from New York. Immediately once they started playing, I could tell I was in for something great. From start to finish, the entire set was tight; I don’t think any of the members missed a single beat. And their lead singer Garth Taylor had some serious pipes—his powerful vocals added tons of emotion to each song. Each song was funky and soulful and had everyone in the crowd wanting to dance. One of the bands’ songs featured one of the most impressive saxophone solos I’ve ever heard, proving that woodwinds are still relevant in this age of heavily distorted guitars and electric dance beats. Also, the drumming was as smooth as butter, which kept the band right on time for the entire set. The solid rhythm section was accentuated by quirky keyboard parts and swell guitar riffs. So for a whole hour, I was left awestruck—along with just about everyone else who had the pleasure of listening, since the band was quickly called back for an encore once they left the stage. Hosting The Rooks was an awesome time and I’m sure many of us can agree that we would be thrilled to have them back at Bucknell sometime.

With such a talented selection of bands, it’s needless to say that the night was a great one for everyone in attendance. Campus Vinyl plans to host more of these concerts in the near future so be sure to check in with us periodically—and if you weren’t able to make it out this time, you’re not going to want to miss the next one!

Be sure to check out The Thought Police and The Rooks on Spotify and Facebook. You can also hear The Rooks on their BandCamp page.

Images courtesy of CJ Moy

What We ThinkJoe TullRock