Photos and Review by Randy Jarosz
"If you don't go to work, then no one will
If you don't go to work, mamma tell me who will
If you don't get up and go to work
The whole damned town is gonna know your worth,"
sings JP Biondo on "Wine and Shine" at Cabinet's show Friday night at Club Cafe. This is a verse the band lives by, performing dozens of shows per year from their native Wilkes Barre/Scranton, PA to as far south as Texas in recent years. At one point Cabinet was playing Pittsburgh up to four times a year, particularly at the now defunct Molly Brannigans in Mt. Lebanon. If you had the fortune to witness this band back then, before Ropeadope Records or even before their self titled, self released album you knew you were witnessing something special. The band would play a nice blend of original music to killer covers from the Grateful Dead, Paul Simon and on rare occasion the Beatles. Cabinet Expanded their music catalog in November of 2012 releasing "Leap," with 11 new infectious songs.
At Club Cafe, cousins JP Biondo and Pappy Biondo on Mandolin and banjo respectively traded off lead vocals on songs such as "Old Farmer's Mill," and "Eleanor," with lead guitarist Mickey Coviello chipping in with background vocals. What's refreshing about this band is that they love to play and you can sense it on stage, their chemistry is unmatched and the crowd feels it. At one point it seemed as if the 150 + attendees were all dancing or at least tapping their feet in time with Dylan Skursky's bass. You could feel the floor shake through out the 90 minute set. Cabinet may be considered by many as a bluegrass band but Jamie Novak breaks the mold of that genre with his drumming skills, keeping the bands timing just right. Todd Kopec may be considered the star of the show ripping through songs on his violin, creating the signature sound of the group that is unmistakeable. Cabinet closed out another great performance with "Oxygen."
Weather you like bluegrass, country, rock, folk, or americana, Cabinet will appeal to you, so don't hesitate to see the boys while you still can in an intimate venue. These road warriors are good enough to be selling out large venues in the near future. For a list of upcoming performances visit www.cabinetmusic.com