Review: Head for the Hills @ Mishawaka, Sept 17

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photo by Lindsay Nichols for Scene

By Lindsay Nichols
Head for the Hills brought their A-game Saturday, September 17 at the Mishawaka Amphitheatre with an unparalleled zeal that will resonate with attendees for weeks to come.  All dressed up and hot off the heels of a full summer of touring that has taken them to entirely new levels, these guys proved that practice makes perfect – they are sounding better than ever. Locked in with intensity and playing with a tightness that demonstrated how well they can predict their band mates’ next moves, the night seemed to go on forever, much to the delight of their fans.
Busting out some great new material along with some killer cover tunes, the show was a well-rounded heater.   Perhaps the dynamic highlight of the night was the ending of the first set when the Head for the Hills original “My Angelie” segued into a flash back to the 80’s with “Owner of a Lonely Heart”.  With full audience entrancement and an original musical nugget that deserves a second listen, the band successfully fused decades of recognizable riffs and lyrics that really got the crowd going, serious-style.  If there were any still feet under the stars I certainly didn’t see one.  And the dancing didn’t stop there, it continued until the wee hours of the morning during this seemingly never-ending night of music.
When “My Angelie” made another appearance in the second set, the crowd really went wild.  This was Head for the Hills creativity at its finest.  Later that set several stellar tunes from their 2010 self-titled release made an appearance: “If n when”, “Solar Bowling Shoes”, “Nooks and Crannies”, and “Poor Boys Melody”.  Weaving their well-known material with their new originals was a treat for all.
For part of the show, the outstanding keyboardist James Thomas joined Head for the Hills onstage, adding a layer of complexity that works well with their signature string sound, allowing jams to be brought to an entirely new level.  A three song encore of “Chipchik”, “One foot”, and “Call Me the Breeze” proved a fiery ending to an unbelievable night for the ages.  It goes without saying that Head for the Hills owned the Mish last weekend.