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Nth Power Lives Up to Their Name at Pour House Show

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After still feeling the high the next day from Nth Power’s three plus hour gig, I couldn’t help but smile reminiscing about Spinal Tap. They went to 11…well, the appropriately named Nth Power goes past that live. I had the fortune of interviewing Nth Power drummer, Nikki Glaspie, when they were playing in Charleston, SC, this past January. I was unfortunately out of town for their show but was hopeful I’d get the chance to see them again. That chance came to fruition this past Wednesday, October 25, 2017, at the Charleston Pour House. As an added bonus, they were playing a second set dedicated to Bob Marley’s music.

For those that don’t know Nth Power, they are a completely underrated group of professional musicians. Nikki Glaspie was Beyonce’s drummer for her 2007 tour that hit five continents. From there she joined Ivan Neville’s New Orleans funk outfit, Dumpstaphunk. She’s also drummed for the legendary Maceo Parker Band. Bassist Nate Edgar of Groovechild and John Browns Body perfectly compliment singer and guitarist Nick Cassarino who came from the Jennifer Hartswick Band and toured with Big Daddy Kane. This Glaspie drum solo from the show will give you a taste of her incredible skills:

It’s a straight up challenge to verbally explain what a band that has mastered jazz, funk, and rock feels like live. From a bird’s eye view, their songs typically go on eight minutes playing hot potato among the three of them for solos while the beat never stops. It’s literally impossible not to dance on some level as the sweat is flying from Cassarino’s incredible guitar shredding and Glaspie’s hair flipping, sing-along drum pounding. I love shows when it’s hard to tell who is having more fun…the musicians or the crowd. Edgar, content with hanging to the side, delivered the nth power bass that back boned so many of the songs that Cassarino and Glaspie shined on.

After the first set break, Nth Power went from a three person to an eight-person band as they took the stage for their Bob Marley tribute. The lineup consisted of two guys on keys, two backup singers, and an extra guitarist. When I saw the venue front say “Bob Marley tribute,” my brain naturally went to all the overplayed Marley songs such as, “Buffalo Soldier,” “Stir it up,” and “Redemption Song.” I should have known better from a group of musicians with strong New York and New Orleans roots. The Bob Marley set list had so many deep cuts, which of course they added their incredible funk and rock flavors on to. I was a bright-eyed kid in a new toy store. The range on Cassarino’s vocals sounded exactly like Bob. The backup dancers were dancing and swinging throughout the entire show. Hell, I’m getting goose bumps even typing that last line. For good measure, they even brought out a sax player for one of the songs. The Marley setlist, which I created a Spotify playlist for because it’s that f’n good (link at bottom), was:

  • Soul Shakedown Party
  • Kinky Reggae
  • So Much Trouble in the World
  • Exodus
  • I Shot the Sherriff
  • 400 years
  • Them Belly Full
  • Rat Race
  • Punk Reggae Party
  • Zimbabwe (sax solo)
  • Positive Vibration
  • Revolution

At this point Nth Power waved and thanked the crowd. Without hesitation everyone responded with a “one more song” chant. Lead singer, Nick Cassarino, winced back to the soundboard and hit his wrist asking if we have time. He then looked back at Nikki who had a big grin. “OK, we got time for one more!”

They then went into a ten-minute melody of:

  • Get Up, Stand Up
  • No More Trouble
  • War

So, yea, do yourself a favor and add Nth Power to your social media follow list:

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