The Dip at The Belly Up

There are a handful of notable bands who have successfully blended brass horns with a rock sensibility. Grey haired folks like me will fondly remember Chicago (Transit Authority), Blood Sweat and Tears or even Chase as bands which successfully fused the seemingly disparate genres of rock, soul, funk and occasionally jazz.   

How grand when along comes The Dip, a band which not only leverages that history but dusts it off for a whole new generation. 

Sliding into The Belly Up one early summer night, the Seattle septet regaled a packed house with their sharp arrangements and crisp musicianship. 

The band leans more toward the jubilant uptempo funk of Tower of Power as opposed to the more studied approach of Blood Sweat and Tears, resulting in a crowd that was constantly in motion. 

If we at The Belly Up had stepped into a time machine that Elon Musk or Rod Serling made available, I’d say last night we were visiting The Dip right after Chicago’s sterling second album.

Led by Thomas Eddy (vocals, guitar) the band drew equally from their latest release Sticking With It as well as deeper tracks. The Dip’s thoroughly crisp arrangements are buttressed by a snap tight rhythm section and burnished by a three piece brass brotherhood (Levi Gillis on tenor sax, Evan Smith on baritone sax and Brennan Carter on trumpet). With Mark Hunter on bass and Jarred Katz on drums, Jacob Lundgren added tasty guitar stylings. The band met a few years ago as jazz students at University of Washington and now leverage their educated musicianship with a reverence of past masters.

The band is never too far away from the funk of James Brown’s Famous Flames (or the tighter moments of George Clinton’s Funkadelic), but their ability to put their original stamp on their songs wins the day. 

For those who think the finer days of brass, rock, jazz and funk are behind us, be schooled by The Dip. 

(photos by Brad Auerbach)

Brad Auerbach has been a journalist and editor covering the media, entertainment, travel and technology scene for many years. He has written for Forbes, Time Out London, SPIN, Village Voice, LA Weekly and early in his career won a New York State College Journalism Award.