This is a critical feature of their community. One can easily tell that the musical pockets created by the likes of dueling guitars, gut checked baselines, screeching synthesizers, a complete projection light show and two incredibly symbiotic drummers are no accident. This group of people knows each other and the musical conversation on stage is simply beautiful to watch. The feeling is not exclusive just to the members on stage. The Mantras’ loyal fan base can testify to the reciprocation of love between performer and attendee, a concert feature which can absolutely lock The Mantras into a new listeners’ brain, and shortly after forever into their rolodex of favorite bands. In a scene where it is sometimes difficult to stabilize a fan base and a consistent identity, The Mantras’ music is transcendent. It has all of the ebbs and flows, peaks and valleys and patterns of constriction and release that can hook someone for life. Each show is a story. Each story is unique.
In addition to the collaborative element between band and fans, The Mantras have shared the stage with some of the foremost titans of jam. Their most recent studio release, entitled Jam Bands Ruined My Life was recorded at Umphrey’s McGee, axe man Jake Cinniger’s home studio, where Jake is featured on two tracks. Shortly thereafter recording, The Mantras opened for and shared the stage with Umphrey’s McGee members while performing the thumping single entitled, “Kinetic Bump.” In addition, The Mantras have collaborated with members of The String Cheese Incident, Tea Leaf Green, and Perpetual Groove among many others. The year 2013 saw The Mantras play over 180 shows, culminating in their annual Mantrabash music and arts festival, held in the beautiful back country of Ferguson, NC.
The festival stands as a testament to the loyalty of the fan base and the engagement of The Mantras within their local, regional, and national music communities. Attended by thousands, Mantrabash has become the landing spot for live music fans from all over the country to enjoy the hard work and dedication of The Mantras in addition to the other stellar musicians who appear over the 4 days.
The ideas expressed on this page are the property of Charles M. Frank, B.A. Communication Studies, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, ’12.
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