Did You Get Your Daily Dose of Reggae?

Did You Get Your Daily Dose of Reggae?


The musical month of March ended with a bang on Tuesday night at the Charleston Pour House.  East Coast reggae/jam rock band TreeHouse!, from nearby Myrtle Beach, opened for Spiritual Rez, a reggae/funk dance experience out of Boston, and made a Tuesday feel like a Saturday night.


Since forming in 2010, TreeHouse! has gained much exposure and love from their fans. With spunky band members Jeremy Anderson on vocals and guitar, Matt Link on bass, and Trey Moody on drums, the trio played on a fantastic set. Enveloping the Rasta spirit, these guys know how to give a whole room of people those irie smiles synonymous with reggae rhythms. The worries seem to melt away when you hear that relaxed, familiar reggae beat. Their perfectly titled album Growth (2013) was composed of songs all written through live jams, which built perfectly on their 2011 self-titled debut album. Both self-produced, those albums proved that these guys stand out from the rest of the “eh” reggae bands and have a really unique sound of their own, which is perfect to play now just in time for the warm beach weather! Traveling on the release tour for their new album, Lifted (just released on March 10), these guys draw a crowd of happy, loving, good-vibin’ people. Their authentic sound was showcased during their set with catchy songs like “Irie Smiles,” “Embrace the Change,” and the gritty “Wildman Rastafari.” Keep a look out for these guys because they are based only an hour outside of Charleston.

When Spiritual Rez took the stage. the energy was great, but I was surprised the crowd wasn’t bigger! It grew as the night progressed, though it was nice to have a larger area than usual to dance about. Band members Toft Willingham, Jesse Shaternick, Ian “Meat” Miller, Clay Lyons, Quinn Carson, Muhammed Araki, and Rob O’ Block worked together to form the most complete instrumentation I’ve heard in a long minute. With bass, sax, trombone, keys, guitar, vocals, and even a keytar, the Spiritual Rez show was extremely entertaining and full of big sound. Their music is absolutely perfect beach-day reggae/funk layered with carefree lyricism. The lyrics contained all things we love about reggae like “the flowers from the sacred ganja tree,” love, and lighthearted vibes.  “Bring It On,” an awesome song off their 2014 album Apocalypse Whenever, brought down the house when they played it live.

Their energy was undeniably contagious, especially because of Toft Willingham on lead vocals and guitar. He had so much spunk, dancing around, jumping, and running in place—all while performing. Everyting was on point, mon (as they say). Muhammed Araki was notable on keys and keytar, funking up any song he touched. “Let’s Go Out with a Bang” was a fun song to get down to because of its memorably not-so-subtle sexual undertones, which I found hilarious. “Agapoula Mou,” an excellent song for a summer night, slowed it down a bit and was even nominated for Music Video of the Year by The Pier. As the night progressed, Ian “Meat” Miller finally got to showcase his individual talent with a killer drum solo after holding it down for the band the entire night. For my first Spiritual Rez show, I must conclude by saying their dynamic sound, the wonderful crowd their music attracts, and their dedication to performance really impressed me, and I can’t wait to see them again soon. 

Photography/Videography by Big Funk Photography