The year 2018 was a busy one for the Dallas, Texas band the Old 97’s. Right on the heels of the critically acclaimed Graveyard Whistling, the band put together their first Christmas album; frontman Rhett Miller released his seventh solo album, The Messenger; and they celebrated 25 years as a band — a major milestone. All of that came together in a terrific concert at Rams Head Live on Saturday.
Luluc, the Australian duo of Zoë Randell (vocals/guitar) and Steve Hassett (guitar/vocals/keys), visited City Winery on a chilly Wednesday night. But both venue, with its intimate feel — combined with the beautiful sounds of Luluc — warmed up an attentive crowd.
Overcoats, the musical duo of Hana Elion and JJ Mitchell, released their debut album, YOUNG, just over a year ago, but they’ve already made a name for themselves with their thoughtful lyrics, beautiful harmonies, and infectious beats. I caught those beats in action at 9:30 Club on Friday, when Overcoats opened Mitski.
Mitski Miyawaki, who performs simply as Mitski, is that rare artist who writes songs that are both musically complex and creates an emotional sympatico between herself and her audience. That skill was on display in her show at 9:30 Club on Friday, the first of two sold-out nights.
Over the summer, Bob Weir, most famous as a founding member of the Grateful Dead, formed a new trio with legendary musician and producer Don Was on upright bass and former Primus drummer Jay Lane on drums. Over the trio’s inaugural tour, Bob Weir and Wolf Bros have been playing a mix of Grateful Dead tunes covers, and a few newer songs. And on a messy, rainy Monday, Bob and company brought a healthy dose of sun to the Warner Theatre.
Kristian Matsson, who goes by the stage name The Tallest Man On Earth, has been creating and performing for more than 10 years. He’s been compared at times to Bob Dylan, but beyond the folk veneer is a growing body of work that is expanding both lyrically and musically. He explored that exceptional at the Lincoln Theatre on Friday.
Of Montreal, the band fronted by the charismatic and wildly creative Kevin Barnes, has been going strong through various permutations for more than 20 years. The Athens, Georgia-born band has released 15 full length albums (not including EPs and singles) — during that time, they’ve experimented with styles (straight ahead pop à la Beatles to country tinged Americana to dance).
Although the songwriting is brilliant and the songs tough to get out of your head, the band’s live show (and by “show” I mean it in the most literal sense) has come to be Of Montreal’s signature, and that show arrived at Ottobar on Oct. 24.