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Sparks reels in quite the show
by Tony Contini
Mar 19, 2008 | 1379 views | 0 0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Ska band Reel Big Fish plays tonight at the New Oasis in Sparks.
Ska band Reel Big Fish plays tonight at the New Oasis in Sparks.
With guitars and brass instruments in hand Reel Big Fish will take the stage tonight at The Sparks New Oasis at 8 p.m. with Chase Long Beach and Half Past Two.

Many bands such as Sublime have adopted the genre from Jamaica entitled Ska but Reel Big Fish made it their own. With the bands essentials (guitar, bass and drums) and a solid brass section, Reel Big Fish rocks a six-man line-up that conquers any stage.

Reel Big Fish’s vocals are usually in constant harmony uniting the raw voices of frontman Aaron Barrett and trumpeter Scott Klopfenstein. With a usually happy tone they are perfect for forgetting about everything and having a good time singing, humming and jumping to the beat.

While Reel Big Fish do not have amazingly deep lyrics, the band’s songs are extremely catchy and easy to listen to and often hit on major life topics such as “Beer,” and ode to drinking away break-ups, and “Scott’s a Dork” about the band’s trumpeter’s personality.

With six studio albums, one live album and an onslaught of EPs it’s easy to see Reel Big Fish have impacted the music scene. Most of the band’s songs popularity falls under the same category of easy listening and fun to hear live songs but, they also have a few that stand out singles that have become radio hits such as “Sell Out” and “Everything Sucks.”

The band’s live show is always entertaining with the mixture of said hits and covers of unexpected ’80s bands such as a-ha’s “Take on Me” and the notorious Duran Duran. Reel Big Fish are also known for wearing funny suits and ridiculous sunglasses while on stage.

The bands that are touring with Reel Big Fish mirror the headliners in genre with catchy trumpet and trombone melodies mixed with fast crisp guitar rhythms produced by huge nine and six member line-ups. What sets Chase Long Beach and Half Past Two apart from other bands are their vocals, which both highlight a female lead vocalist. While Chase Long Beach has a more raw and grungy Ska feel, Half Past Two’s vocal styles are innocent and crisp reminiscent of The Hush Sound from Chicago.

The New Oasis in Sparks will be shaking with die-hard Ska fans who are willing to pay $20 cover at the door. Tickets are available for $17 in advance at The New Oasis and on the internet at So before calling it a night fans of the bands, genre or music in general should check out an orchestra of Ska Bands.
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