An “ugly sweater party” at Sundown at Granada brings the funk

A full band on stage

Chancy headlined the Ugly Sweater party at Sundown at Granada on Friday. Photo: Jessica Waffles

It’s the New Year, but we’re still celebrating with memories of the Ugly Sweater Party  Sundown at Granada in Dallas hosted  over the holidays.

Dallas bands Chancy, Hive Mind Honey and Altercations played the show, each bringing their unique flavor to the stage. Sundown is consistently bringing funky bands to the forefront, and this venue was perfect for this lineup.

The evening kicked off with Altercations, a young band that embraced the holiday theme with all members donning ugly Christmas sweaters.

A musician playing drums

Hayden Wilson from Altercations switched to drums for a song. Photo: Jessica Waffles

A full band on stage

(left to right) Garett Rodriguez, Miles Walley, Kara Lerma and Hayden Wilson on stage at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

The set carried an attitude of punk with an upbeat style of funk, characterized by impressive individual performances – particularly guitarist Garett Rodriguez’s shredding skills and bass player Miles Walley’s steady rhythm.

Based on the technical skills of the group, it was surprising to find out that all the members of Altercations are younger than 18, except Walley – who’s currently enrolled at LSU. They met at School of Rock, and have been a band together since 2019.

A musician playing guitar on stage wearing a Santa hat

High school junior Garett Rodriguez is ahead of his age on guitar shredding skills. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Two musicians on stage

Hayden Wilson’s powerful vocals show promise, boding well for his plans to attend Berklee College of Music next year. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Altercations ended their set with “Killing in the Name” by Rage Against the Machine, showcasing lead singer Hayden Wilson’s belting abilities and honing in on ’90s nostalgia vocal tones.

The band’s debut LP Socks and Sadness was released in November, and has already almost hit 100,000 streams on Spotify; the sensitive lyrics and blend of sounds seem to have struck a chord with listeners.

Catch them at one of their only next shows (before the members are separated for a while because of school) at Granada Theater on January 28. The event is called Hope Healing Cancer with Music presented by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and will feature sets by Altercations, The Paper Bears, Flamingo Tree, Kobra, Bandoleroand more.

A group of 5 women wearing festive sweaters

Guests donned their “ugly Christmas sweaters” for the party at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

A full band on stage

Hive Mind Honey released their debut album Transmissions this past November. Photo: Jessica Waffles

The energetic show continued with Hive Mind Honey up next, showing off their range that extends to psychedelic rock, funky jams, and upbeat indie songs that would fit in with Trevor Hall and Mt. Joy.

The band celebrated their debut releases this year, with two singles dropped earlier in the year and debut album Transmissions dropped in November.

The vibe brought by Hive Mind Honey was apropos to their name, as the warmth of their sonic textures melted into the room like sweet honey.

A musician playing keyboard on stage

Riley Anderson on stage as part of Hive Mind Honey at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

A musician playing guitar on stage

Hive Mind Honey leader Travis Littrell digs into a solo on stage at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Recurring themes of life, spirit and karmic lessons peppered the set in their lyrics, creating a sense of community through their music.

Frontman Travis Littrell’s ability to convey their messages was heightened by his guitar solo skills, as listeners were treated to luscious licks on his Gibson.

A standout song was “Drum the Earth,” whose lyrics and gentle thump of the bass drum invited guests into a world sensitively observed by Hive Mind Honey. This band is a great listen for conscious music fans.

A musician playing drums on stage

Hive Mind Honey at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

A full band on stage

Chancy’s stage presence is explosive on stage, showcasing their playful banter and energetic playing. Photo: Jessica Waffles

As the night progressed, Chancy took the stage as the headlining act, immediately bringing a fun and charismatic energy. The groovy atmosphere and modern funk resonated with the crowd, turning the room into a dance floor.

Chancy’s three-part harmonies and funky beats kept the audience captivated, with the seamless transition between songs showcasing the band’s musical cohesion and effortless chemistry.

Lead singer Alex Tuft’s relentlessly cheerful disposition is infectious on stage, which paired well alongside banter between the band that rippled chuckles into the crowd.

A full band on stage

(left to right) Jake Smylie, Alex Tuft, Cole “The Beep to the Boop” Scott of Chancy on stage at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

A drummer on stage

Jake Smylie is the newest addition to the Chancy lineup. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Chancy’s set included feel-good tunes like their latest single release “Junebug Garden,” with bassist Austin Franks leading the vocals and encouraging the entire crowd to dance.

The band’s commitment to their craft shone through, with a new drummer Jake Smylie delivering a stylish performance.

Their other 2023 single “Draw It” was released in January, and Chancy’s discography will continue to grow in 2024 – joining three EPs and several singles.

A musician on stage

Chancy played a mix of released and new music at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Two musicians on stage

Richard Milton on stage with Chancy at Sundown at Granada. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Chancy will have their sights set on ambitious efforts in 2024, as Tuft said on stage: “We love playing here. We play locally, but we want to expand that.”

Mark your calendars for February 23, when Chancy hits the stage at Three Links in Deep Ellum, supporting the album release of Dallas pop/rock artist Brigitte Mena.

Two musicians on stage laughing

Banter between Austin Franks (right) and Alex Tuft (left) filled the venue with laughs. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Two musicians smiling on stage

Alex Tuft teases the crowd about playing “Wonderwall” before going into Chancy’s original set. Photo: Jessica Waffles

Jessica Waffles is a freelance photographer/videographer and regular contributor to KXT. 

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