That said, MICHAEL GROSS & THE STATUETTES and CAVEDOLL put everything they had into their sets for Thursday night's CWMA showcase and managed to get at least a few people over their fears of being front and center.
MICHAEL GROSS & THE STATUETTES were a new name to me. I wasn't familiar with them at all, but when I mentioned that's who I was going to see earlier in the evening, it was immediately met with, "Michael Gross? Oh, he makes all the girls swoon."
I wasn't really sure what that meant, but in the back of my head I kept picturing a guy in a Justin Timberlake hat serenading a room full of ladies.
Fortunately (or unfortunately), that was not the case at all.
When the band finally took the stage, they played a very different style than I had been anticipating. The country-tinged pop songs were full of energy and catchy hooks that were able to get a few people to take a break from playing pool and actually watch the band. Even playing with a fill-in bassist (with a music stand full of notes in front of him) MICHAEL GROSS & THE STATUETTES were able to keep the crowds attention and played a solid set. The band seemed a bit pre-occupied at times, but the did make a few of the ladies swoon. Bedroom eyes and fluttering hearts could be seen all around the room.
CAVEDOLL was up next, and it's pretty clear that every electro-pop band needs a singer as charismatic as Kness Angulo. The crowd had thinned considerably by the time they actually started, but CAVEDOLL held the attention of everyone in the room from the first note they struck. There were a few technical difficulties early on, but once those were assessed it was smooth, danceable sailing from then on. The band was able to get a more than a few people moving on that intimidating dance floor (including a woman that spent the entire set with a glowing hula-hoop) and the rest were at least nodding their heads and tapping their feet.
CAVEDOLL appeared to be having much more fun than THE STATUETTES, but maybe it's just because the music was a little more upbeat. Either way, it was another solid night for the CWMA's. (Trevor Hale)