Article: Dana Weigel Photos: Matt Munsell ST. LOUIS, MO – Yonder Mountain String Band finished out their Spring 2016 Tour with opening band Horseshoes and Hand Grenades HHG at The Pageant in St. Louis Saturday night. HHG played a fantastic opener, priming the audience for a double set from Yonder Mountain. Both bands brought fantastic energy and outstanding play throughout the show. HHG opened with an impromptu rendition of Meet Me in St. Louis and continued with high energy, fun loving tunes to get the audience toes' tapping. The band members all hail from the frozen state of Wisconsin and could be seen on stage drinking PBR and playing a variety of instruments. Harmonica, upright bass, violin, banjo and guitar are featured in their music. They even pulled out an accordion to entertain the St. Louis crowd. It is certainly difficult to label the music produced by HHG, bluegrass, rock, country, folk music all apply. One thing is for sure, their sound is just the thing for dancing in a venue or playing riverside as you throw in a line or sip your favorite brew. The St. Louis crowd was dancing, singing and there were more than a few HHG t-shirts flying off the shelves by the last song. The audience was thrilled as Yonder Mountain took the stage with fingers flying, pushing the boundaries of traditional bluegrass for a wild two-set ride. Dave Johnston kicked off the show with several banjo instrumentals that left concert goers breathless with the sheer speed of his picking hand. Adam Aijala was outstanding on guitar and vocals, zipping across the strings of his Collings acoustic throughout the show. Jake Jolliff is famous for his mandolin work and was amazing on stage with HHG as well as Yonder Mountain. The audience was clearly moved by the passion with which he plays. Ben Kaufmann’s vocals are soulful and edgy. His weapon of choice is the upright bass and he is as brilliant and captivating a bass player as you will ever see live on stage. Last but certainly not least, Allie Kral is tremendous on violin making her instrument sing and perform for the audience. She plays rhythm rapping on the surface of the violin for percussion, she picks, she saws, her fingers fly across the fingerboard. The crowd was riveted by her solos all evening. Yonder Mountain’s newest album, Black Sheep is scheduled for national release at Telluride Bluegrass Festival in June. It is sure to push the limits of each and every instrument and the collective music of the band as they continue their journey. You won’t want to miss their Summer 2016 Yonder Mountain Tour.