Mardi Gras Mambo

February 27th, 2012

Galactic – Terminal 5 – February 25, 2012

It’s not often that the sound of funk-ified brass and woodwind echoes throughout Terminal 5, but New Orleans jam musicians Galactic made it happen on Saturday, eight groovy bars at a time. It was a “post-modern rock party,” as honorary band member Corey Henry (of Rebirth Brass Band) called it. And while the six-piece band was doing just fine jamming on their own as they started the set, they quickly enlisted the help of a few friends.

Living Colour’s Corey Glover, first to join them, balanced the set list with his still-killer voice. A perfect example was Glover’s vocal range on “Out in the Street,” which offered fans even more than just the excellent, solo-based instrumental tunes the guys in Galactic were playing on their own. After Glover helped wind up the rowdy crowd, openers the Soul Rebels Brass Band came out and dueled through some wailing solos.

Galactic used the rest of the set to feature each member’s talents, including saxophone player Ben Ellman’s handful of gritty, mean harmonica parts and a particularly lively drum (and cowbell) solo from Stanton Moore. Wild as some moments were, the musical balance showed up again in the encore, starting with “Ash Wednesday Sunrise,” a tune that blended radio smooth with Galactic’s signature funk, and finished with Glover nodding his head to each stuttering shout from Henry’s trombone during the cover of Living Colour’s “Cult of Personality.” —Sean O’Kane

Photos courtesy of Greg Notch |