Photos and review by Randy Jarosz
Chopper Pilot, “A band’s band,” as they are dubbed, is a two piece hard hitting rock outfit led by a charismatic Dan Kitching on vocals and lead guitar, while band mate Marty Brown pounds away at the drums. The Pittsburgh duo are cut from the same cloth as garage rockers the White Stripes and the Black Keys, relying heavily on their blues influences.
The band set up shop at the Smiling Moose in Pittsburgh’s South Side Sunday, October 13 playing a 45 minute set alongside pop/punk trio the Full Body Tones from Lexington, Kentucky. The guys touched on tracks from each of their first two albums and tossed in a cover and new songs from their forthcoming release called “Gifts and Souvenirs”. Chopper Pilot started out with some guitar riff, heavy hitters like “Scoutie Sank In,” and “El Diablo,” before Kitching asked the crowd to join in on the song “Where You Wanted To Be.” “I need your help with this song, ok, guys,” asked Kitching? “Steel City! it’s not you it’s me, repeat after me,” he asked. This is a song about taking a break from the city you love. “We still love you Pittsburgh,” re-assured Kitching. This just may be the bands best song, sort of their own rock anthem.
At any given moment Kitching could be found leaping across stage or greeting fans on the floor with his wailing guitar. He even led an impromptu song made up on the spot, with Brown not missing a beat on drums. The highlight of their set was a rousing White Stripes-esque rendition of Britney Spears “Toxic,” a must hear tune. The crowd joined in one more time for the closer “Today’s the Day.”
“A bands band.” What exactly is “A bands band?” To me it’s a band that can perform in front of 5 people or 500 people and put in the same amount of raw energy in every performance. Chopper Pilot can do just that. If you are looking to have a fun night with friends and hear some good music check these guys out.