By Will Roper
Photos by Brittany Ward

April 16, 2018

Future Feats performs at Duffy’s Tavern in Lincoln, Neb., on April 14, 2018. Brittany Ward/KZUM.

A Los Angeles-based pop alternative band with two members heralding from Lincoln put on an incredible, energetic performance despite the frigid April weather on Saturday.

Future Feats headlined the snowy night at Duffy’s Tavern, with Omaha band The Real Zebos kicking the night off at 9 p.m. While the weather for bar hopping and local music was less than ideal, the bar was crowded with people who braved the cold for the two bands.  

The opener, an indie alternative band The Real Zebos, energized the crowd almost immediately. Their up-tempo rock mixed with the occasional organ and keyboard synths kept every song interesting, and covers of songs like MGMT’s “Electric Feel” sounded eerily similar yet uniquely original. And it didn’t matter whether they were playing their own music or covers, the vitality and presence from the group of five was infectious, and big instrumental breaks with the crowd clapping or cheering were the band’s best moments.

Members of The Real Zebos perform at Duffy’s Tavern in Lincoln, Neb., on April 14, 2018. Brittany Ward/KZUM.

 The Real Zebos have a growing following of fans and their solid performance at the jam-packed tavern showed they could be gaining a lot more if they keep playing to Lincoln and Omaha crowds. Look for this band when they play at 1867 on April 21.

With a full crowd waiting in anticipation, Future Feats took the stage and played one vivacious song after another for their hourlong set.

The five-piece alternative pop band, led by a lead singer who goes only by the name Josh, are all set to go on a half-month tour with pop duo Matt and Kim and Tokyo Police Club starting April 17 in Chicago. The tour will see the bands travelling through different venues in the Northeast, including Boston, New York and Washington D.C.

For Duffy’s Tavern, Future Feats performed an electric, dance-inducing set that had every member jumping around stage and everyone in the audience doing the same. Armed with two guitars, bass, drum kit and Josh, the group played a high energy-style of music that at times was akin to a futuristic Fall Out Boy – with a creative, unique sound of their own.

While Future Feats is known for their eclectic singer and songwriter Josh, the chemistry between the entire band makes their music that much more fun to listen to. Songs like “Same Mistakes” and “27” were made that much better when seeing drummer Zach Zoellner along with lead guitarist Ben Havok — both formerly of Lincoln — perform in an irrepressible blur of drum sticks and sweat, or when the two guitar players synchronized their playing and shared the front stage together.

Future Feats performs at Duffy’s Tavern in Lincoln, Neb., on April 14, 2018. Brittany Ward/KZUM.

The drums, guitars and bass were in a zone of their own as they fed off of each other’s energy and elevated their sound to another level.

Josh himself was an amazing performer and even more so as a singer. With each song being more anthemic than the last, his voice never faltered and instead seemed to grow even more spacious as the set progressed. His singing chops matched perfectly with the band – just another example of the great chemistry everyone had with each other. Josh also broke out his own guitar for one song, producing a cacophony of three guitars which made for a compelling sound.

Overall, the show at Duffy’s Tavern proved well worth the cold journey. The Real Zebos put on a great opener, showing their own mix of unique alternative pop rock with both original and cover songs. Like Future Feats, the band was completely in tune with one another for their entire set and produced a formidable sound because of it.

As Future Feats makes their way toward a remarkable touring opportunity, their stop in Lincoln seemed to show they’re more than up to the task. Every one of their songs invites the audience to dance, and the members themselves are dancing for the majority of their set. It’s one thing to know and play the music, but the chemistry of Future Feats between each band member is what propels them into another level.

[slickr-flickr tag="ZebosFeats2018" captions="on"] View photos on KZUM's Flickr.

Will Roper and Brittany Ward are interns with KZUM.