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Paul Mann: Todd & Erin Liven Up SOhO with a Little Help from Tom Curren

Local experimental rock duo Todd & Erin helped usher in the first beautiful night of spring, on March 20, with an intimate concert at the SOhO Restaurant & Music Club in Santa Barbara.

While the evening was a bit choppy with a few false starts, it was fascinating to watch the duo evolve in real time as a live act, performing their own unique style of music.

The show was an informal bit of an experiment of sorts, with the band trying new live arrangements of their growing sound catalog. The duo complement each other perfectly with Erin's clear emotive vocals and crisp rhythms on guitar blending with Matt's deeper backing vocals and extraordinary guitar and multi-instrument playing.

Todd is sort of a 21st-century version of the old time one-man band, the one who would carry and play a dozen instruments including percussion on his back. He relies on computer tracks instead for percussion sounds, mixing beats from musical genres and generations with ease.

Together the two drift in and out of melodies that defy characterization, while creating a pleasing familiar sound. The resulting music is reminiscent of 1970s pop while being anchored squarely in the electronic world of the new millennium. The duo were joined by another local music veteran, Tom Curren, on drums for several songs.

Curren, who is well known in the surfing world as the second winningest world champion in the sports history, also played a surprise opening set. The multi-instrumentalist, singer songwriter just came off an extensive tour of his own.

— L. Paul Mann is a Noozhawk contributing writer. The opinions expressed are his own.

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