Photography by Steven Philips StSteven.com
Article by Sal McFall
Some came to hear Boombox. Some came to hear Ichisan. Some came for both, and this was the right answer on this night at Union Transfer. Ichisan, aka Igor Skafar, a photographer and producer/DJ from Slovenia, just made his US debut in September. We were treated to his beats, rhythms and melodies at The Blockley, when he played a City Bisco afterparty, and won over a lot of fans in the Philly area. But he’s been doing the music thing since 2008 and has a well deserved following. He started with some lower key material that got the small crowd going, and as the size of the audience built up, the energy of the music did as well. By the end of his solid set, everyone was dancing and totally into it.
Russ Randolph and Zion Rock Godchaux came to the stage as Ichisan was finishing his set, and the applause that erupted was for both Ichisan and Boombox, the featured act. These two guys have been playing their electronic dance music to enthusiastic audiences for several years now. Zion, son of Keith and Donna Jean Godchaux (of the Grateful Dead and a good number of other jam bands) plays guitar and provides vocals as well. He also wears a feather boa and a big fuzzy hat. Always (while performing as Boombox). On this night, a fan made it up onto the stage, and made off with a boa. Russ is on the keyboards, and production equipment that puts out the beats, the bass, and the sounds that transforms the rock and blues into house style dance music, with a lot of funk rhythms and plenty of psychedelic sounds. They often throw a Grateful Dead cover into the mix but play a lot of original music. Boombox is one of a number of bands currently performing that blend the techniques of producers with the originality and musicianship of organic live music.
This show at Union Transfer was a big success. A big and enthusiastic crowd came to dance and the energy was there. Boombox took charge of the sounds transitioning from one genre to the next. From blues to dubstep, from jammy rock to house. The crowd was diverse as well, and the music brought everyone together. Overall a great show. So whether you came to hear Ichisan or Boombox, you were rewarded with a night of great music.