Turkuaz and New Mastersounds
December 8, 2016, at The Rex Theater in Pittsburgh, PA
Article & Photos: Patrick Bruener
Pittsburgh venue, The Rex Theater, is known for hosting incredible shows. In collaboration with local production team Grey Area, the Rex Theater hosts acts anywhere from Bluegrass to Hip-Hop, but they are best known for bringing premier funk and soul acts to town that might otherwise overlook the Steel City. On December 8th, 2016 The Rex may have hosted their best funk gig yet. Amidst an epic nationwide tour the Brooklyn nine-piece Turkuaz, along with the British funk quartet The New Mastersounds, heated up a cold Thursday night to a full house.
The New Mastersounds opened the show early around 8 pm. They came out dressed casually yet classy as always. The four got the crowd going early with a few numbers leading into members of Turkuaz sitting in, including Shira Elias (vocals/percussion), Chris Brouwers (trumpet/keys), Joshua Schwartz (saxophone/vocals), and Greg Sanderson (saxophone). As if the entire Turkuaz horn section wasn’t enough, soon after The New Mastersounds brought out Pittsburgh’s own Steel Town Horns to join the fun.
Turkuaz came out next, busting through the crowd from the back entrance all the way onto stage. With the mood already set by The New Mastersounds, Turkuaz took it to another level from the first measure they played. Is there anything this band can’t do? The group’s sound is so enormous and always seems to perfectly befit what the crowd craves. After a smashing two hour set complete with a rare cover of The Talking Heads’ “Slippery People” both bands took the stage and performed their split 7” EP. The disc features two songs that are each covers of the other band’s work. The tour ends this Saturday after dates in Atlanta, Nashville, and Asheville, NC. If you weren’t able to catch this tour don’t worry, Turkuaz has just announced a spring tour throughout March and April – no word yet on upcoming tour plans for The New Mastersounds.