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Ski Bunny, Crow Follow, The Sugar Cones, Fireking

O'Brien's, Allston, MA

March 10, 2022

Tim - Crow Follow

As the winter fades, the pandemic (at this juncture) winds down and gas prices spike amid Russian-Ukraine war, rock keeps going amid - and perhaps because of - all the unrest life throws at us.

I trooped over to Allston’s tiny, hole in the wall rock venue O’Brien’s Pub for what was billed as The Rock Island Show, which I presumed meant all Rhode Island area acts. Not quite, as at least half the bands were actually Boston based. In any case, I was in for a memorable night of no-holds-barred rock with some well-established and newer players that gelled fantastically and brought a good, diverse mix of piledrive, punk attitude, bohemian mystique and melodic inventiveness!

Ski Bunny

Ski Bunny opened up. They're a young trio that exuded third generation punk ethos with a healthy dose of old school rock swagger. Notable was their edgy version of the Allman Brothers’s blues-southern rock classic "Whipping Post", a rather unlikely song for a young, neo-neo-punk band to cover. Amazingly, it works quite well and the rest of their set, all originals, held up really well and kept my interest going. Or, shall I say, they kept me hopping and bopping!

Crow Follow

Following up was Crow Follow. They brought a Morphine-like bohemian jazzy low-rock mystery (with poetic recitals) and early King Crimson-style progressive rock intensity and complexity into the soup. They brought in guest vocalist Ruby Viens (daughter of Girl with a Hawks Linda Viens & Wayne Viens) for their first song. She brought a confident mystique which was amazing considering this was her debut on stage. Sax player John Keegan also brought some Funhouse-era Stooges avant toodle-oo, bassist Carolyn Jean Corella her “Rocky” replica bass savvy and main Crows guitarist Tim Sprague shredded darkly and vocalist/percussionist Judy Anne Sprague brought her drama and mystery. And drummer Laurie Ramona tribally held it all together and celebrated her birthday tonight! Hey-yanna-ho-yanna-hey-yan-yan to you Ramona!

The Sugar Cones

Next up was an actual Rhode Island based band The Sugar Cones. They were no bubblegum band, but a power trio that emphasized power! When they hit it, it was with a staggering intensity and heaviosity belying not only their name but their sultry looking front woman/guitarist Malyssa BellaRosa, who was a belter par excellence!


Fireking headlined. They have been burning the clubs with their melodic but hard rocking songs for seemingly eons! The King of Fire Tony Kaczynski always brings his vocal passion, songwriting chops and solid guitar playing through with his band that, even with a new line-up, sounds very much like a well-oiled (or should I say well-fueled!) unit. "Look Into the Sun" (my personal fave) epitomizes Tony’s tuneful, driving style and ‘60s guitar tone. He even went into a cover of the Beatles’s "Rain" that reveals part of his musical roots. But Rain certainly won’t be putting out the Fire(king), they’ll be smoldering on and flaring up somewhere in clubland!


Caroln Jean Corella - Crow Follow

John Keegan - Crow Follow

Judith Spraque - Crow Follow

Malyssa Bella Rosa - The Sugar Cones


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