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Mace & Crown | April 24, 2018

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Local Music Scene: Dear Adamus Rocks Shakas Live

Local Music Scene: Dear Adamus Rocks Shakas Live

Lindsey Lanham
Staff Writer

When it comes to the local area music scene, bands are the base of art culture.  They play at tiny clubs for $10 a ticket to a crowd of no more than 100 people–and they thrive off of it.

“Shakas, put your f—ing hands up!” Raytheon Dunn, lead singer of Dear Adamus, shouted at Shaka’s Live on Feb. 4. The 45-minute-long set was solely originals that the band has released over the years.

Dear Adamus on stage at Shaka's Live. Photo by Lindsay Prekker.

Dear Adamus on stage at Shaka’s Live. Photo by Lindsay Prekker.

In an interview before the show, the band sat around and talked touring, what they’re currently listening to and music.

“Of course!” Dunn said when asked if the band plans on releasing a full-length album anytime soon.

“We were going to put out a full-length this year, or actually 2016, with some of the songs on ‘Afterlight.’ Then we thought, ‘the smart thing to do would be to take the good songs, the more organized songs, the ones that we actually like more and put that into a record.’”

The “Afterlight” EP, released last February, is just a teaser of what Dear Adamus can achieve with their music.

Dear Adamus opened their set Saturday with “Somber Face,” which features both Dunn and additional vocalist Chris Wilkins. It’s easily the most complex song from the EP, telling a story of the harsh reality of a relationship.

Dunn formed the band in 2011. In 2012, Wilkins (guitar, vocals and keyboard) and Severin Dí Croce (percussion) joined as permanent members. Just in the past year, two additional members joined the group. Jon Callahan (lead guitar) joined in April after the band played a set at Shaggfest. Chelsea Elliot (bass guitar) joined last October when the group performed with Emarosa.

Dear Adamus began with a dream.

“It’s kind of like an enigma of a person that’s the good and bad in all of us,” Dunn explained when asked what Adamus was. “It kind of came from a dream that I had.”

Dear Adamus’ music is heavily influenced by bands such as Circa Survive and From Indian Lakes. The group even saw Circa Survive when they performed at The NorVa on Jan. 26.

“I fangirled,” Dunn admitted when he said he met the band. “I feel like they changed me as a person.”

Dunn also mentioned that he’s been listening to a lot of Local Natives and Young the Giant lately. He explained that he likes the dynamic of Local Natives and how he hopes that Dear Adamus can achieve some of that.

“And Young the Giant – they just write some really good s—,” Dunn laughed.

The night started off with a set from the indie-alternative band, Bonne Chére. Their first full-length album, “Good Cheer,” was released last May. The group relies heavily on jazz and their raw, rock sound. Lively and interactive, the group was the perfect opener. They even recruited members of Dear Adamus to shoot confetti cannons during their set.

“You guys like Blink 182 covers? Well, too bad,” Wilkins joked with the crowd during Dear Adamus’ set. The band gives off a nonchalant, no pressure attitude that complements their aesthetic. They’re not too worried about impressing others because their music will do that for them.

Photo by Lindsay Prekker.

Photo by Lindsay Prekker.

Dear Adamus closed their set with “I’m Your Audience.” A newer track from the “Afterlight” EP, the song was a hit with the crowd. Though originally recorded acoustic, it was played as a rock hit built for the radio.

Starcoast, also from Virginia Beach, closed the show. A perfect alternative rock compliment to Dear Adamus, the group played both new and old songs. By the end of the night, they had the crowd chanting, “One more song!”

With much of the crowd singing along to the music, there’s no mistake that Dear Adamus has developed a strong following over the years. The band has made their impression on the Virginia Beach scene and Saturday night’s show proved that they will always be welcomed by fans.

Dear Adamus has music available on Bandcamp, Spotify, Soundcloud and iTunes.