Boot and Saddle is a hidden gem from the busy rush of Center City. Nestled on South Broad Street, the bar is illuminated by its neon sign, welcoming all who enjoy good drinks and better music. The bar doubles as a concert venue for small and unknown artists who haven’t struck gold quite yet. While these small artists may not have struck gold, there is a good chance that the bar-goers find gold in an artist. Palmas is the perfect example of fans striking gold.
After playing a sold-out show in Brooklyn, Palmas, a local band from Philadelphia, came home to play a lively show at Boot and Saddle Feb. 20. Before the show, members from Palmas, including lead-singer Kurt Cain-Walther and guitarist Matt Young could be found interacting with fans at the bar and making friends. The two musicians could not have been friendlier, winning over new fans and being good, sociable human beings.
Palmas has always been described as a modern-day Beach Boys. Being mentioned in the same sentence as the Beach Boys should come as high praise, being that the Beach Boys rocked the ‘70swith a brand new surfer-rock style of music. Palmas has reincarnated this lavish and soothing style of entertainment, creating a beachy acoustic atmosphere. The band has advertised their EP “To The Valley” with the tagline “Don’t tell your ears it’s winter.” The night of the show was cold, but the tunes were fire.
Opening the set was garage-rock band The Teen Age. The venue isn’t very large, but once they left the stage, fans also left to get another drink and fill up the 150-person-capacity venue. The room was packed to the brim with enthusiasts of all ages ready to relive the days of the Beach Boys, or enjoy an up-and-coming surfer rock band.
Palmas’ six-song EP is the only released material the band has. “To The Valley” captures the essence of the band, but does not do a good job capturing the high energy or fast tempo the band displays live. They brings to their show an insane amount of energy, plucking every string and hitting every beat as if it could shatter the very stage underneath them, which likely wouldn’t stop them from finishing their set anyway. Similarly, the live show sounds different just due to the speed at which the band plays their songs. On their EP, the band seems to enjoy chilling out whereas they are a quick-hitting rock and roll band live.
About halfway through their set, “San Francisco Bay” set the tone for the rest of the show. The band opened with slower songs “I Want to Know,” “Without You” and “Better Guy.” But once “San Francisco Bay” was played, Boot and Saddle became a dance floor. The range and passion Cain-Walther demonstrated was as if he were playing the first and last live show in existence. The mood was set for the rest of the night and the audience was loving every little bit of it until the band ended with “Ride The Wave,” the only song of the band’s encore.
Though the band can be found on Spotify, there is no denying the music does not do them justice. The band plays frequently at different venues around the city, such as Ortlieb’s Lounge and Union Transfer (opening for the likes of Great Good Fine Ok and Vacationer). This band is a can’t miss for any lover of music, specifically any lover of some good ol’ rock and roll.