Friday night’s show at The Study in Hollywood marked the official debut of a brand new acoustic album from Louden Swain. Like other Louden Swain shows, the release party for Splitting the Seams was fun, engaging, and intimate. Despite some venue issues, this show truly captured the spirit of the band and what they have been building for twenty years.
Louden Swain delivered a set that had both old and new fans hooked from the start. Rob Benedict was delightfully amusing and emotional, cementing him firmly in place as this reviewer’s favorite front man. Billy Moran’s masterful guitar-playing was on point, as usual. Mike Borja’s bass and keyboard playing was delightful and exuded happiness. Stephen Norton’s drumming was the heartbeat of the band, and it was nice to see him perform an acoustic set in a setting outside of conventions. Departing from tradition, the songs were performed out of order, allowing the gravity of emotional songs to be offset by lighter pieces, and creating an emotional dynamic that was satisfying in a way that only Louden Swain can deliver. True to form, Rob engaged with the crowd to an exhilarating degree.
All in all, the success of this concert rests squarely on the bands shoulders. They delivered a phenomenal show to celebrate the release of a phenomenal album.