Around Town: Rainbow Kitten Surprise rocks it out at Duling Hall

Rainbow Kitten Surprise, an alternative rock band from Boone, North Carolina, stole the show Monday night at Duling Hall. Tickets went on sale June 12 and were sold out a few days before the concert.

The Duling Hall stage empty, awaiting the bands that will play that night. Photo by Madeline Claire Hughes.

Opening for RKS was the band Elliot Root from Nashville, Tennessee. Their music set the atmosphere for the night. They played songs from their latest album, Conjure, that perfectly mixed pop and indie rock together. By the end of Elliot Root’s setlist, the crowd was hyped, and fans could tell it was going to be an amazing night.

With the crowd chanting their name, Rainbow Kitten Surprise walked out to take the stage. At the top of their song line-up was “Cocaine Jesus” from their album RKS. The crowd immediately responded by jumping and singing every word to the song. If singing ends up not working out for lead vocalist Sam Melo, he should definitely start a dancing career. Not only did Sam pour out sweat and heart with his vocals on the stage, but he also showed the audience all types of dancing. He flawlessly blended ballet, back rolls, and any other dance move he could possibly create together.

Lead singer Sam Melo. Photo by Madeline Claire Hughes

To the right of Melo was bassist Charlie Holt. He too had control of the crowd. Drummer, Jess Haney was jamming in the back. To the left of Melo was Ethan Goodpaster on lead guitar. Darrick “Bozzy” Keller, also on guitar, could also be heard throughout the night with his vocals.

Song after song, Rainbow Kitten Surprise delivered. When the song “Wasted” from their album, RKS was performed, everyone in the building joined in singing. Not a single person stood flat on their feet. The energy from the crowd and band was amazing. Highlighted, of course, was Melo’s crowd surfing and dancing.

The author with (left to right) Sam Melo, Jess Haney, and Charlie Holt. Photo by Isabelle McLeod.

Rainbow Kitten Surprise closed with “That’s My S**t” from their album Seven + Mary. The crowd didn’t want the night to end, and the audience’s cry for an encore was heard by the band. The bassist, Charlie Holt, lead the band’s return to the stage to play two more songs. Members of Rainbow Kitten Surprise are true performers and left everything they had on the stage. It was a fantastic night for music in the Jackson area.

After the show, Elliott Root and Rainbow Kitten Surprise were available to meet with their fans. Pictures were taken and items were signed by the band members. Proving that they are truly committed to making a personal connection with their audience.  

What makes Rainbow Kitten Surprise so irresistible? For me, it is probably their name. With a name like Rainbow Kitten Surprise and the performance that the group put on at Duling Hall, RKS cannot be forgotten. Their original lyrics (along with their different harmonies) added flare to its show. Each band member complimented the others and highlighted his strength during every song. Melo’s voice is powerful but not overpowering, and it is more unique than anything. Rainbow Kitten Surprise is a band that should not be ignored.

Rainbow Kitten Surprise’s setlist. Photo by Madeline Claire Hughes.
Lead vocalist Sam Melo on guitar. Photo by Madeline Claire Hughes.