The Grand Rapids six-piece band is spreading its wings as it builds upon a new EP with a catchy mix of soulful originals and unique covers. (Story, video)
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Launched initially as a jam band inspired by the likes of Grateful Dead and Phish, The Sauce has morphed into something much more than that – an eclectic, soulful jazz- and rock-hued six-piece ensemble.
As lead guitarist Eric Yoder puts it, the name of the Grand Rapids band says it best: “Just a mix of a lot of different kinds of music.”
Fronted by singer Rachael Peretta, who joined The Sauce about a year ago and added “a little bit of difference in the musical tastes” of the group, the band not only boasts experienced musicians with a diverse background but a couple of chiropractors (bassist Ryan Ball and guitarist Steve Goedekke) to boot.
With keyboard player Landon Knoppers and drummer Kevin Hole also on board, what’s resulted from this intermingling of styles, influences and previous musical adventures is a strikingly beautiful mélange of rootsy jazz, blues and jammy rock – an engaging blend showcased on the band’s self-titled debut EP.
Recorded almost entirely live with just a few overdubs, the band laid down the tracks with Rob Savage at Waveform Audio in Lowell, then had them mixed and mastered by Alex Gauthier “on the same board that Radiohead did their first album on,” Yoder said.
“We picked songs that we felt – two of them that were more universally that people could hear and like, and two that were a little more groovy and rocked,” he added. “We thought it was a good mix.”
That sort of mix powered the band’s debut for Local Spins Wednesday at SpeakEZ Lounge this week, with the group expertly meshing extended jams, originals and covers of everything from The Box Tops to Frank Zappa, and keeping a rapt crowd of fans engaged for a lengthy evening of music. (Watch a video highlight from Wednesday night’s show below, along with a video/podcast from the band’s interview/appearance this week for Local Spins Live.)
All of that is liable to continue as the band continues to write new music and broaden its exposure, with all group members contributing to the songwriting process.
“It’s nice that everybody writes stuff,” said Yoder, “because we always have new stuff on the table.”
VIDEO: The Sauce at SpeakEZ Lounge
BONUS COVERAGE: Check out the video/podcast of The Sauce appearing on this week’s edition of Local Spins Live.
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