I have a confession to make: I have a crush on Middle Distance Runner. I went to see them a few months back at Iota, and since that time I found myself wondering when I could see them again. Their catchy songs, sweet style, and talented band members make for a winning combination, if I do say so myself. Dear Middle Distance Runner, do you like me back? Please check yes or no.
MDR is a local band that has been around since 1995. They may have started out as an excuse to play Led Zeppelin covers, but since deciding to take themselves seriously, they seem to have really hit the right note. They’ve even had some commercial success with songs in HBO and Harley-Davidson commercials.
They came to The Rock and Roll Hotel last Friday night with Nunchucks, The Black Hollies, and Mobius Band. I wouldn’t say that the show was better than the one at Iota (I suppose you never forget your first love) but it was a lot of fun. I love a band that tries to get the audience involved, and the guys in MDR are experts at encouraging clapping along and singing the “ba buh duhs” at the end of “The Sun and the Earth.”
Also cool was that they billed this show as a “Presidential Welcoming Party.” They were selling Obama scarves (?), sang a touching cover, and dedicated the rocking “Man of the People” to the man himself. I don’t know, maybe it’s cheesy, but I appreciated it because I’m not going to be around for all the day-of madness.
No upcoming shows for these guys listed on their website, but you can listen to their EP. They also announced that they had an album coming out, but that’ll be “God knows when,” so I’m not holding my breath. Why would you, when they’re so fun live?