Ana Popovic brought her “Like It On Top” Tour to the Tralf Music Hall in Buffalo, NY last Thursday to a packed room of eager fans. The constantly touring Popovic is a frequent visitor to the area and is always well received. Her latest band incarnation included players who played the trumpet, sax, keyboard, bass and drums.
The band opened with a instrumental overture as Ana took the stage in a tight black leather dress and immediately broke into “Ana Shuffle.” This new band she has put together creates a very full sound onstage. It’s reminiscent of an old soul review show except with this type of show Ana is on lead guitar playing at a blazing place. Now 20 years as a solo artist under her belt, she played a variety of new and old music with a few surprises thrown in. “Can You Stand The Heat” and “Love You Tonight” set the pace for the evening and it was a torrid one to say the least. Ana’s fiery playing and singing backed by the sax, trumpet, and a solid rhythm section made a wall full of bright & funky sound. It’s a style that would make James Brown proud. Changing tempo for the tune “Train,” the music slowed to a smoky blues pace with Ana soloing center stage. “Love Fever” from her first album was an uptempo tune with Ana again stealing the spotlight with her precise playing. Following was “Long Road Down” another uptempo number featuring a round of solos from all the band members. The Tom Waits song “New Coat of Paint” was given the Ana treatment and left no doubt of her skill as the song flowed from her fingertips. The Madrill song “Fencewalk” was played out like a rock song with and her drummer trading solos.