I love the band Ripe! I mean, I REALLY love this band. We discovered them 6 months ago, and they have quickly become one of my favorite live bands!
In fact, in my 2017 Concert Awards, I named Ripe as one of the top live acts in two categories – the “Can You Keep A Secret?” and the “Band Who Drinks the Most Red Bull” awards. Check out the full list of award recipients here:
We first discovered Ripe at the Levitate Music Festival last summer. They were probably our favorite “find” of the entire two-day festival. Last December, we saw Ripe in Wilmington, DE. It was a bit of a strange show. The venue was a seated theater. It reminded me of a high school auditorium. If you are familiar with Ripe, you know that their music isn’t really suited to sitting down and listening. Their music makes you want to dance! And, dance we did, despite the seats. You can read more about that show here: Ripe
When I heard Ripe was coming back to the Philly area this spring, and they were playing The Foundry, I was excited! Not only was I going to get the chance to see them again, but The Foundry is a great venue for them to play. The size keeps the show intimate, and the general admission layout allows you to dance the night away.
So, did Ripe deliver for the third time? Keep reading to find out!
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The Foundry is the smaller room in The Fillmore complex. Holding only 450 people, it’s located on the second floor of the venue.
Tip #1: If there are two shows going on at the complex, there are always two separate lines. If you are heading to The Foundry, make sure you get in the right line. It’s usually much shorter and easier to get through.
The Foundry has a small stage, a large bar, and comfortable seating areas around the perimeter. It’s a great venue, because there really isn’t a bad place in the room to see the show. Bathrooms are located in the back on the right (if you are standing in the front of the venue looking towards the back).
Tip #2: If there is any bad view in the room, it’s located around the bar area behind the two poles that are in the middle of the GA floor. While the poles aren’t big, they do make for a bit of a challenge if you end up behind one. You may have to do some dodging and weaving to get a full view of the stage.
The bar serves drinks and a limited food menu. The food is by Wolfgang Puck, which to me normally means you are paying for the name and not really getting anything special. Based on my last experience with the chicken tenders and fries, that seems to be the case here as well.
Tip #3: The Fillmore (The Foundry) is located in the up and coming Fishtown neighborhood. There are plenty of food options for grabbing a bite before the show. Within a few blocks of the venue on Frankford Avenue are Frankford Hall (which serves German food and beer) or Fette Sau (which serves barbeque). If you want something a little less pricey and much more down to earth, grab a burger at Johnny Brenda’s. A Philadelphia institution itself, they also have live music regularly. It’s a great place to stop in after a show too.
Tip #4: The entertainment complex where The Fillmore (The Foundry) is located, has really grown over the last few years. If you don’t want to walk to the restaurants on Frankford Avenue, there are now several food options right in the complex, including Mad Max Restaurant. Before this show, we ate at the Goose Island Brewhouse, which recently opened. The food was good (I had a burger and fries), and they have some really good beers. It’s a great place to hang out before a show.
Tip #5: Parking near The Fillmore (The Foundry) is easy. There are two lots located near the venue. The cost to park is typically $10-15. If your timing is good and you don’t mind walking a little further, you can typically find parking on Frankford Avenue or the surrounding neighborhood streets. Most of its free, but be sure to read the signs to make sure you aren’t parked illegally. Also, be aware that the trolley comes down Frankford Avenue. I’ve seen people that haven’t parked close enough to the curb, and the trolley can’t get through. They will have your car towed if you are blocking the trolley route.
OAK & ASH
ABOUT THE BAND
Oak & Ash was formed in 2014, and is based out of New York City. The four-member band consists of Rich Tuorto (vocals, guitar), Chris Tuorto (guitar), Paul Gramigna (bass) and Bryan Garbe (drums).
The band’s sound is described as alternative pop/rock, and is inspired by bands like Kings of Leon, The 1975, and Maroon 5.
In 2016, Oak & Ash were recognized as “Long Island’s Best Band”. They recently opened for Bon Jovi at Madison Square Garden.
Oak & Ash’s latest single – “For You” – is available on all streaming services.
When I am going to see a show and I’m not familiar with the opening acts, I try and listen to a few of their songs before the show to get familiar with them. I did that with Oak & Ash. I thought their stuff was “ok”. Didn’t knock my socks off, but it wasn’t bad.
Seeing them live is exactly why you should always go into a show with an open mind. Oak & Ash were fantastic! In fact, my husband even commented halfway through the set how much he liked them.
Oak & Ash took the stage right at 8:00 p.m. They told the audience that it was their first time playing in Philadelphia. They quickly won the crowd over with their energy and talent.
You can definitely hear the Kings of Leon influences in their music. In fact, I think Rich Tuorto’s voice sounds a lot Caleb Followill of KOL. My husband thought he also got glimpses of Chris Cornell. Here’s a clip of one of their songs from the show, so you can judge for yourself.
The band was no-nonsense, and got through as many songs as they could during their short set. Some of the songs they played were “Step Into the Light”, “Jungle” and their most recent single “For You”.
I really like this band and think they have a big future ahead of them. Check them out if they come to a city near you.
Oak & Ash doesn’t currently have any additional tour dates beyond this show and the Bowery Ballroom the next day, so be sure to check out their website to stay up to speed on any new dates as they are announced at www.oakandashmusic.com.
ABOUT THE BAND
Los Elk is an up and coming indie rock band out of Boston. The band formed in 2011 at Skidmore College, and is made up of Amir Rivera-Lieberman (guitar/vocals), Gabe Follettie (bass), Justin Nash Fisher (guitar) and Ryan Bondell (Bondi) (drums/percussion).
The band describes their sound as “mixing indie rock with flares of funk and R&B”. Los Elk is known for their high energy live shows, which has gained them a big following on the east coast. They have even landed in Spotify’s U.S. Viral 50 chart.
Los Elk’s current single – “Deja Voodoo” – is out and available on all major streaming platforms.
Los Elk took the stage around 8:40 p.m. What I love about this band, is their personality. As they took the stage, they all gathered together for a quick cheer. Amir is a great front man. He’s entertaining and high energy. If you watch closely, you’ll also see the expressions he makes and the personal interaction with the crowd. I think that’s so key for a young band as they build their fan base.
One of the most unique parts of their set, was when they played this instrumental, which Amir said was inspired by his heritage.
I also loved “Tire Swing”, which is fun and easy to dance to. That’s a theme in all of their music.
Los Elk even covered Kanye West’s “Flashing Lights”, which was totally unexpected. They definitely put their own twist on it, and I personally liked it better than the original.
Los Elk is a lot of fun, and they are clearly having a ball being on the road with their friends from Ripe, who Amir said they have known since high school. Putting these two bands on the same bill translates into a high energy, non-stop dance party!
You can check out the band’s music at www.loselk.bandcamp.com. They are doing a couple more shows with Ripe in April. Be sure to follow them on Facebook for information on future tour dates.
ABOUT THE BAND
Ripe is based out of Boston, MA. The band is made up of Robbie Wulfsohn (vocals), Tory Geismar (guitar), Jon Becker (guitar), Sampson Hellerman (drums), Josh Shpak (trumpet), Calvin Barthel (trombone), and Nadav Shapira (bass).
The band describes themselves as a dance/pop-funk band. The truth is, their live shows are one big musical party!
Ripe took the stage at about 9:45 p.m. As I mentioned above, this was my third time seeing Ripe, and they get better every time. The sold-out crowd absolutely loved them.
This is a band on the verge of hitting it big. You could see it in the crowd. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a crowd be that excited and dance that much during a show.
Ripe opened their set with one of my favorites songs – “Caralee”. That song will get anyone moving with its funky groove and horns. Of course, the big news in the world of Ripe, is that their debut album – Joy in the Wild Unknown – was being released at midnight on the night of the show. The second song of their set – “Little Lighter” – is the first song on that album.
In addition to the great music and the talented musicians, a big part of this band is their front man – Robbie. He is a true entertainer. Robbie has an amazing voice and puts everything he has into every performance.
Although the band is from Boston, they gave a shout out to the Philadelphia fans. Robbie congratulated the crowd on the Phillies’ home opener win, and someone in the crowd threw their Phillies stocking cap on stage, which Robbie proceeded to wear for a couple of songs. He also acknowledged the NCAA Champion Villanova Wildcats, as well as the Philadelphia Eagles, which of course led to an “Eagles chant” from the crowd.
Ripe played a great mix of new songs and old favorites. In fact, they played a song called “Momentum Games” which Robbie said was brand new and was not on the new album. Ripe also played a couple of covers, including “Vultures” by the John Mayer Trio and “On My Mind” by Ellie Goulding.
As Ripe moved into the “homestretch”, as Robbie called it, he invited everyone to rev the energy level up to a 10 and leave it all on the dance floor. The last three songs brought the energy of the crowd to a new level, including “Talk To the Moon” and their current single from the new album – “Downward”.
Ripe left the stage shortly before 11 p.m., and the crowd immediately started chanting “One More Song!”. As Ripe came back out for an encore, Robbie invited everyone to come see them at the merch table in the back after the show. He also announced that everyone at the show was going to have the chance to buy the new album before it was “officially” released.
Ripe finished up their set with crowd favorite “Goon Squad”, which included a mash-up of Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger”. Very appropriate for the Philadelphia crowd, which goes crazy about anything having to do with the movie Rocky.
Keeping in the cat family theme, Ripe wrapped their set with something I can honestly say I didn’t expect – a cover of “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” from the Disney movie The Lion King.
The final song was appropriate, as I think Ripe is on their way to becoming something great. While I’m thrilled for the band, I’m a little sad too. I think this is the last chance we’ll have to see these guys in a small venue. I just hope that if they hit it big, they remember their fans and keep the love and passion they have for the music.
Ripe is on tour all spring promoting their new album. If they are coming to a city near you, go see them! You won’t regret it! All of their tour dates are up on their website at www.ripetheband.com.
Did I convince you to go see Ripe? Want to learn more about them, Los Elk or Oak & Ash? Comment below or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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