Weekender

Cabinet brings new electric sound to State College

Cabinet will perform Dec. 2 at The State Theatre.
Cabinet will perform Dec. 2 at The State Theatre. Photo provided

Bluegrass/Americana band Cabinet will play The State Theatre for the first time on Dec. 2, but the band members are no strangers to Happy Valley. Their last visit was a show last year at Elk Creek Cafe.

“We’ve been kind of all over the place,” singer and mandolin player J.P. Biondo said. “We’ve been recording. We’re working on crafting our new sound that we have.”

The band added a new drummer this year, and Biondo said that, combined with an electric turn, means fans who attended the Elk Creek show should be ready for something different.

“There’s a new energy,” Biondo said. “It’s a lot more electric but still with the roots all intact. We’re going to get up there, and we’re going to rock it. We’re going to jam, and we’re going to have a good time.”

Cabinet’s most recent album, “Celebration,” marked maybe the most intimate offering from the band yet. The new material might seem like a stark contrast, but Biondo assures fans that the more electrified sound does not mean the band has changed from its roots.

“It’s funny because I say that now we’re going in this more energetic/electric kind of direction, but ironically enough that album is our most stripped down and acoustic Americana/Bluegrass record we’ve ever made,” Biondo said. “But, I really love the album. The songwriting is just great. My cousin ‘Pap’ (Pappy Biondo) wrote most of the tunes on that one. It’s just a nice, well-rounded Americana album, I feel.”

Ever the road warriors, the band will continue to tour through the end of the year.

“(The road) is great. It’s just like any other job; it’s got its ups and downs,” Biondo said. “Sitting in a van for eight hours at a clip is a little rough at times. It’s all for that end result of getting up on stage. We love meeting new people, for sure.”

When not dealing with the rigors of the road, the band likes to spend their quiet time with loved ones.

“When the time gives itself to us, we really cherish being able to hang out with our kids and our wives,” Biondo said. “It’s nice to just relax and stay put for a while; it feels good.”

Biondo makes bold promises for anyone thinking about attending a Cabinet show.

“They’re going to have the greatest time of their lives and make new friends,” he said. “We’re lucky that our fan base kind of formed a family around us amongst themselves and us. That’s the thing — when you come to a Cabinet show, you’re going to have some fun, hear great music and meet some like minded people.”

IF YOU GO

  • What: Cabinet
  • When: 8 p.m. Dec. 2
  • Where: The State Theatre, 130 W. College Ave., State College
  • Info: www.thestatetheatre.org
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