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Guster

Thursday, July 4 @ Briggs & Stratton Big Backyard, 10 p.m.

Jun. 12, 2013
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During the mid-2000s, perhaps only Dave Matthews Band resonated more in fraternities than the Boston-area four-piece Guster, so it’s only appropriate that the band's origins began in college, as well. After meeting freshman year at Tufts University in the early 1990s, their friendship and knack for acoustic melodic pop rock spawned six full-length records and quite the cult following.

The group was once known for forbidding a regular drum kit in favor of various hand percussion methods, but they’ve since opened up. Their latest studio record, 2010's Easy Wonderful, somewhat daringly incorporated synthesizers to the mix, definitely a slight departure from their roots in simple guitar-based gallantries. But the formula has largely remained the same throughout their career. Hits like “Fa Fa,” “Amsterdam,” “Barrel of a Gun,” “Happier” and “Do You Love Me” all have smart, concise, enthusiastic power pop hooks on fierce lockdown. Frontman Ryan Miller utilized his status to start the earth-conscious nonprofit organization Reverb in 2004, which spreads the word to fellow bands about innovative ways to reduce a tour's carbon footprint. 

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