Photo by Tara Graber Photography
The dueling guitars of Austin Robinson and Chris Treesh occasionally steered the music onto the fringes of metal territory, begging onlookers to bang their heads. Meanwhile, bassist Nolan Opper and drummer Ryan Moreno orchestrated frenetic grooves ripe for foot-stomping.
If the sheer loudness of certain sections was not enough to keep a listener awake in the twilight of the weekend, surely the dynamic contrast did the trick. The guitarists switched on a dime from frantic, distorted parts to cerebral, reverb-laden grooves anchored by minimalistic bass lines from Opper.
Tempos changed in the blink of an eye. Sometimes, just before the band entered a slower section, Moreno would quicken the pace for a few bars, drawing extra ferocity from the screaming guitars. Other times, a crawl became a sprint in a fraction of a beat.
One piece began with reverberating arpeggiations from Robinson and slow, distorted phrases from Treesh. The two guitarists eventually fell into a syncopated pocket that catalyzed a reggae groove. Then, they opted for an atonal call-and-response sequence, after which Opper broke into a quick bluegrass line that Robinson thickened with a catchy chord progression. Treesh contributed a sort of hillbilly-grunge riff that became the centerpiece of the jam and remained present as the tempo declined.
The piece ended with a vocal jam reminiscent of those found in` certain versions of Phish’s “You Enjoy Myself.”
Earphorik paid further homage to Vermont’s jam behemoth by sandwiching a cover of “Weekapaug Groove” within the set opener. After the cover’s signature riff, though, the band ventured into territory original enough to discourage Phish comparisons.
Around 12:30 or so, with no more than fifteen people in the crowd, Earphorik called it quits, forgoing an encore.