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Watchung Mountain Riders at Diamond Cycle- Montclair, NJ

Watchung Mt RIders

Local show? Sure. Free show? Of course! Dead cover band for free and down the street? No question. The Watchung Mt. Riders have been playing north NJ in various iterations for the last 17 years. Their current lineup has been going strong for the last two years. Tonight, they were playing behind a bike shop on Bloomfield avenue one of the main drags in Montclair, NJ. Across the street from the newly popular Wellmont Theater, Diamond Cycle has a makeshift stage and plenty of room in their parking lot to host room for dancing and enough sound for the entire block to take notice.

The store was open and kindly offered access to their bathroom and a cooler for any beers fans brought. The evening started ju

st before the sun went down and fans, dogs, and even a few vendors showed up. Playing a parking lot combined the shakedown vibe and the full show. Lee the jeweler, her two youngest kids, and dog Penny came with to partake in the festivities. The stage area was steep so except for the bravest, dancing took place deeper into the lot. The band made it so easy that we managed to compensate for the pitch.

Cool weather aided by a soft breeze was only hankered by the smell from some nearby dumpsters. One problem of playing behind a row of shops and restaurants. Standing stage right helped everything and provided better sound too.

Both sets were solid. They covered all the bases and were tight. I’ve mentioned before that each town seems to have their own Dead cover band. We get a fair share around here and some are better than others. While the Riders aren’t going to be playing the Wellmont (where Dark Star Orchestra plays while on tour) anytime soon, they are a great act and for free, they are worth seeing. Locals can often find them at Tierney’s Tavern also in Montclair. 

 

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