Last week I had the chance to see Fall On Your Sword perform at the Lincoln Center and I LOVED it. Drawing from their work as composers for film, TV, and advertising, their live show is a blend of original music and visual elements. Behind the trio, a plasma screen played bits from movie classics on loop incorporating one liners into the music, creating a humorous mix. Sonically comparisons to LCD Soundsystem come to mind which makes sense considering Philip Mossman is a founding member of LCD. I admire Fall On Your Swords work in composing and getting to see this performance made me a bigger fan and I’m looking forward to hearing more them.
It’s been 10 years since Jimmy Eat World released ‘Clarity’ on Capitol Records. It was the first album that had Jim Adkins providing lead vocals, rather then Tom Linton. It wasn’t until leaving Capitol, and recording/self-releasing their next album ‘Bleed American,’ where the group made its jump to the mainstream, but ‘Clarity’ remains a fan favorite. So in recognition of this, Jimmy Eat World lined up a 10 city tour, to celebrate the 10 years it’s been since the record was released. I had the privilege to see them on their fourth night of touring at Boston’s newest music venue, the brand new House of Blues.
Expectation were high. Super high. Usually when I get this excited for something it never satisfies me. Like Hostess cupcakes, which talk a big game about being delicious, but never deliver. [Read more...]
One knew that it was going to be all about the music early on into Gary Louris’ concert at the Somerville Theater on April 1.
Instead of singing about growing old in the arms of an old lover, in the opening ‘Omaha Nights,’ Louris changed the words to be about growing old in the arms of 1970’s musician Leon Russell.
Despite the opening worry, Louris delivered, performing almost all of his first solo album, ‘Vagabonds,’ as well as many songs from his days with the popular alt-country group the Jayhawks. If Rolling Stone called the Jayhawks one of the best bands you’ve never heard of, then Louris must be one of the best songwriters you’ve never heard of. Which is a true shame. Louris delivered an excellent set, with a solid backing band to a half-full house on Tuesday night in Somerville, Massachusetts.
Louris’ voice and lyrics are what make him stand out from other musicians and both of those things were on display. From the opening ‘Omaha Nights,’ to ‘True Blue,’ and ‘She Only Calls Me on Sunday,’ the songs from ‘Vagabonds,’ reveal Louris searching for both questions and answers (big and small) in life’s everyday occurrences.
Without a piano in the band, the guitars had to fill the void, and they did ably, with Louris tearing off several solos, filled with distortion and feedback. They were the perfect counter to a voice that always comes across crystal clear, cutting through to the heart of the matter.
Louris also delved into his back catalog, playing a good number of Jayhawks tunes. ‘Waiting For the Sun,’ ‘I’d Run Away,’ ‘Blue,’ and ‘Save It For A Rainy Day.’ (He also pulled out ‘Everybody Gets By,’ a un-recorded Jayhawks gem.) Louris also gave a nod to side project Golden Smog, playing, ‘Listen Joe,’ and ‘Until Came You Came Along.’ He also played ‘Every Word,’ his contribution to the documentary film ‘Wordplay,’ as well as one he co-wrote with the Dixie Chicks. (Introduced as, ‘now it’s time for the name dropping.)
If there was a weak point in the evening, it was some of the harmonies, which is a true shame. The backing band Vetiver were solid and performed well, but on several occasions there were some bum notes hit. Even Louris seemed to notice and, according to several other concert goers, seemed upset with the flubs.
Louris was fun and entertaining, with his comments between songs sounding like he was hanging out with a few friends, playing wonderful music. And maybe that’s the best way to describe the show. A fun, well-played evening of music with friends. Isn’t that enough? -Sam