What You Missed at the Nightmare Before Christmas Concert

Christmas came early for those who attended the Nightmare Before Christmas Concert at the Vanguard this past Friday. The concert was local artist Hoarseman’s inaugural headlining show. He was joined by bands Kat Lock, The Odyssey, and Kinda Collective for the special occasion. It was a night of good humor, great music, and delightful theatrics. The local lineup was anything but lackluster as each act gave an engaging and lively performance.

The show kicked off shortly after fans adorned in assorted Christmas sweaters and other holiday accessories crowded the stage in anticipation of Oklahoma City-based band Kat Lock. When the band took the stage, they matched in holiday-fashion enthusiasm by flaunting yellow star patches (some neatly sewn, others stapled on). The band opened the show on a strong note with frontwoman Kat Lockʼs vocals bubbling over catchy guitar riffs and driving rhythms. “This song, like all of my songs, is about disappointing men,” Kat said before transitioning into a soulful ballad. Kat Lock closed the set with 2018 single “Hard to Find”, and reminded fans that they can stream the group’s latest EP You Again on Spotify, Apple Music, and everywhere else.

Photo by Alec Beeson

The Odyssey started off with their single “Green Light” and had the crowd moving within moments. Even in a sparkly red bow tie, frontman Cobey Brown exhibited the chauvinism and raw talent of hard rock giants. The band broke out into a flurry of funk rhythms for their latest single “Fresh Air.” “You know this one!” Cobey said before kick-starting gritty rock anthem “Love You Back.” From there, the band moved onto unreleased song “Believe in You”, a slow jam that provided a touching moment to flex Cobeyʼs falsetto. The Odyssey played a couple of songs from their EP Stormcoming, including “Mr. Nice Guy.” The performance was especially dynamic with the inclusion of a saxophone solo. Overall, The Odysseyʼs performance was energetic and impressive.

Kinda Collective was up third, and they brought a charming show. The band was decked out in red Christmas sweaters and Santa hats. Kinda Collective serenaded the crowd with a clever fusion of bossa nova and indie rock on the song “Dance With Me” from their 15 Love EP. They gave the first (and only) cover of a Christmas song that evening with a smooth rendition of “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus.” The group then transitioned to “In The First Place”, and frontman Eric Wall dedicated the performance to “all of the mean girls out there who donʼt reply to text messages.” They ended in funky fashion with fan-favorite single “Nicolas Sparks.” Kinda Collective, (also known as the Go-Getter Red Sweater Gang), were a charismatic act with lovable banter and a superb sound.

Hoarsemen and the Heard took the stage for their first headlining show as Richard Strauss’s “Also Sprach Zarathustra” from 2001 A Space Odyssey blared over the speakers. The grand entrance was only a peek of the theatrics that followed. They started off with songs from Hoarseman’s album Annihilation, including “Millennial Whoop”, a youthful anthem that the whole crowd joined in for. “Henry Ford rides again” shortly followed with an energetic and impassioned performance. Cobey Brown joined the ensemble on guitar and performed songs from Hoarseman’s latest album Notre Dame is Burning. They gave a cathartic performance of the album’s title track as well as other songs from the album, including “Crown of Thorns.” The show met a celebratory end with heaps of colorful confetti filling the air and white balloons tumbling down from the mezzanine.