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On a recent Thursday night in Columbia, SC, college kids and yuppies packed a downtown bar crawl, filling several downtown blocks. Just a few miles away, 40 to 50 people saw Sergio Dias and Os Mutantes play the New Brookland Tavern. What did the barcrawlers get out of their evening? A few drinks (or more), a few laughs, but probably not much more. Meanwhile, those who went to see Os Mutantes got so much more.
While the current version of Os Mutantes is filtered through Dias’ vision, it is still a vision that packs a wallop. Dias has continued to hone his skills as a fine bandleader, and a fantastic guitarist. He has also gathered together a strong collection of musicians to bring the band’s sound together, puling from each era of the band’s history. Above all else, there is a sense of fun in the music that Dias and others have thoughtfully embraced. That sense of joy in discovering something that still makes those early Os Mutantes records such a joy to listen to.
For those in the audience, there was also a sense of joy. To finally see such a heralded band during their first ever tour of the Southeast. To hear some of the band’s best-known songs played right in front of them, and to know that, for at least a couple of hours, you are exactly where you want to be, and seeing and hearing what you want to do. No city bar crawl can ever fill that void.
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