By Robert Goldberg | September 14, 2023

📸: shot by Taylor Weinberg

When conversing with your neighbor, you might hear conventional phonetic phrases like, “Good Morning, Good Afternoon, Good Evening, And Good Night.”  However, going to see a Neighbor show turns neighborly conversation into an all out jam fest where bluesy grooves and pure body language dominate the dance floor. This past Friday at Brooklyn Bowl was no different, as the band headlined there for the first time, accompanied by another up and coming psychedelic jam band, Baked Shrimp. Neighbor began as a group of close friends composed of Richard James (vocals, keys), Lyle Brewer (guitar), Dan Kelly (bass), and Dean Johnston (drums). Richard, who was neighbors with Lyle, had the idea that they needed to make music together. They brought in funkatronic bass lines from Dan and silky drum fills from Dean and the rest was history – a group of neighbors you’ll never want to stop asking for sugar.

The quartet kicked off their first set with the bluesy ballad debut, “Welcome,” which included a raging guitar solo from Lyle and evolved into an all out auditory siege straight into the next two songs, “He’s Not Me” and “Lonely Rider.” “Lonely Rider” had the crowd boppin’ like they were at a Nashville honky tonk and set the group up for another notable debut, “Rosalia,” which included piano melodies from Richard that made us feel like we were floating on a cloud. The fellow Neighbor fans offering us fried chicken also helped us reach a state of ecstasy. After a few more songs, including a cover of “Let it Rain” by Eric Clapton, the ensemble performed their most engaging song of the night, “High Five Gauntlet.” They directed fans who had never seen Neighbor before to high five Neighbor vets, creating a real sense of community during the show.

The second set began with our favorite song of the night, “Trippin in the Van,” which included lyrics reminiscent of String Cheese Incident. The rest of the set was a combo of country folk, jazz, and funktastic tunes. Brooklyn Bowl was in for a true get down with everyone movin’ and groovin’. After the second set ended, Neighbor came out in true rock ‘n’ roll fashion for an encore where they ended the show with the underrated Beatles track, “She Came in through the Bathroom Window” – an awesome way to end a night filled with great, underplayed cover songs and diverse original music. Check out Neighbor on their Fall-Winter 2023 tour as they play across the East Coast of the U.S., and bring the neighborhood!

 Connect with Neighbor on Instagram, Spotify, and their website.

📸: shot by Taylor Weinberg

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