Adelaide and E-Man rock Plymouth Roc

Arts and Entertainment

Young music acts shine in Downtown Plymouth

By Austin Vicars
Staff Writer

Adelaide's front man Ian Griffiths rocks out on is guitar at the Plymouth Roc on July 3.
Adelaide’s front man Ian Griffiths rocks out on is guitar at the Plymouth Roc on July 3.

In 2010, the boys in Adelaide where only juniors in high school when they decided to form a band. After a few years of writing music and playing shows, the band decided to take a break—until now.

After a year off, Adelaide is rejuvenated and ready to rock. Adelaide is a rock band from Plymouth/Canton, Michigan draws inspiration from bands like Snarky Puppy, Tool, Incubus, Radiohead and Explosions In The Sky.

The trio had a bit of a homecoming Friday, July 3, playing their first show back at the Plymouth Roc Bar. All in their early 20s, the band is young, but talented. The group consists of guitar player/singer Ian Griffiths, bass player Jon Ferrell and drummer Miles Gerou.

While the band has catchy vocal melodies, Adelaide shines brightest during their extended instrumental sections. These long drawn out passages are musically tasteful and impressive with parts ranging from slow, drawn out melodies to loud, crashing garage rock.

Griffiths used a variety of pedals to get some fantastic tones out of his guitar and played outstanding. The newly engaged Ferrell played tight bass lines that sounded warm and thick, always keeping the band on track. Drummer Gerou lent his hand to the band’s dynamics, laying down silky, smooth grooves when things were mellow and ramping things up with double bass fills when necessary.

Adelaide’s great instrumental sections are not a knock on Griffiths’ vocals. Griffiths’ vocal performance was strong throughout the band’s 45-minute set. However, Griffiths was not the only vocal talent Adelaide displayed Friday night. Rapper and band friend, E-Man (Emmanuel Bates), collaborated with the group for a few songs and performed a set of his own prior to Adelaide’s.

“He’s a good friend, a good artist, he’s got a good work ethic. Big time worker, I mean he gets out there, he promotes, he talks to the promoters, he books shows… He has a very open ear for music,” said Gerou.

Rock bands collaborating with rappers has a history of failing, but this mash-up worked well. Adelaide’s strong instrumentals made an intense atmosphere for E–Man to lay his rhymes over. The rapper’s presence brought charisma and energy to an already strong Adelaide set.

The Canton rapper started rapping at 19 and said, “It was kind of just my way to vent, to relieve frustration.”

E-Man has a variety of music in and out of hip-hop that he draws influence from, including Kanye West, System Of A Down, Tech N9ne and Nirvana. E-Man’s performance was full of energy, clever rhymes and strong beats that resonated with fans and bar goers alike.

“Honestly, I just try to get people through the day, try to get people hyped up,” the MC said after his performance.

Adelaide and E-Man gave a remarkable performance. Each had strong individual sets, combined with a strong collaboration to end the show.

Both acts exude with potential for the future, and Adelaide is focused on creating new music.

“We’ve got an album in progress,” said Griffiths.

E-Man has plans himself, and will be performing in Walled Lake Aug. 1, at Mad Hatter Pub.

Keep an eye out and an ear open for both Adelaide and E-Man. Both talents are hard working and have bright futures. It will be interesting for fans to watch both Adelaide and E-Man ascend through the local scene and possibly one day onto the national scene.