Upon first impression, indie rock band The Weeks does not seem to command much stage presence. The band consists of four men wearing raggedy t-shirts and boasting a carefree attitudes. At the band’s concert at the Rock and Roll Hotel on Oct. 19, however, its unassuming demeanor disappeared; the band defied the crowd’s expectations with an amazing live performance, incredible guitar riffs and an overall fun show.
Founded in 2006 when the members were teenagers, The Weeks is made up of two brothers, Cyle and Cain Barnes, on vocals and drums respectively, with bandmates Samuel Williams on guitar and Damien Bone on bass.
Hailing from Mississippi but currently based in Nashville, Tenn., the band released its debut album “Comeback Cadillac” in 2008, but did not break into the music industry until the release of its 2013 album “Dear Bo Jackson.” The indie rock outfit is now on tour to promote its most recent album, “Easy,” released in April.
Though it has yet to arrive at superstardom, it was clear that the band has gathered a loyal fan base, with audience members arriving wearing t-shirts from past concerts. Some songs, such as “The House We Grew Up In,” “Bottle Rocket” and “Blame,” were clear crowd favorites.
During these standouts, the atmosphere of the concert was electric. However, the band also mesmerized the audience with songs it didn’t already know, like “Hands on the Radio.”
Although listening to The Weeks conjures memories of listening to pop-infused rock contemporaries like the Foo Fighters, Saint Motel and The Mowglis, the band’s opening act — Dan Luke and the Raid — was more reminiscent of Cage the Elephant’s harder, grunge sound.
Dan Shultz, the frontman of Dan Luke and The Raid, is in fact the younger brother of Matt and Brad Shultz of Cage the Elephant. Dan Luke and The Raid is also finding its place in the music industry with recent hit “Golden Age.” The sonically intriguing track was one of the act’s standout songs at the show, and the band captivated the audience with guitar riffs and clear Southern influences.
Both bands gathered new fans with their incredible musical talent, but The Weeks frontman Cyle Barnes was in his element, establishing a personal and casual rapport with the crowd. The crowd was endeared by the clear passion the band expressed and the sheer fun the band members were having on stage, teasing each other and shamelessly dancing with their guitars and microphones.
It was clear that The Weeks are a true band of brothers, continuing to tour not just for the recognition but for the fun they have as a group and the love of their craft.
The Rock and Roll Hotel was the perfect place to house the band’s Washington, D.C. show. The vintage decorations, dim lighting and mirrors reflecting the concert lights created an intimate feel for the venue. The funeral-parlor-turned-nightclub and concert venue is the perfect place for up-and-coming artists to break into the mainstream scene.
With a great set list of slow ballads and high-tempo crowd favorites, incredible lyrics and a great rapport with the crowd, The Weeks delivered a stellar performance to the 300 audience members who filled the small venue. Even after the band was brought back onstage for an encore, the audience demanded another, chanting for the band to return to stage.
Longtime fans of the band and new fans alike will be anticipating the band’s return to the District, next time on a bigger stage.