Although I’m a late arrival to the post-rock party, I started following This Will Destroy You a couple years ago. With their sonic power, strong sense of melody and extreme technical abilities, this band’s music spoke to me in a way I’d never experienced before. So I jumped at the chance to see TWDY live at the Black Cat recently. As a bonus, to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the release of the eponymously named first full length album, the band would be performing it and the 2006 EP, Young Mountain, in their entireties.
Accompanied by second guitarist Bill Mackay, Ryley Walker’s music is an expert amalgamation reminiscent of the Grateful Dead’s live “space” passages, Pat Metheny’s delicately picked jazz guitar, and today’s proliferation of post-rock bands. Although the songs largely “felt” like instrumentals due to the extended improvisational sections, Ryley’s occasional vocals owed much to the influence of Nick Drake and John Martyn during his performance opening for Calexico at the Lincoln Theatre on Friday.
Calexico’s Joey Burns is a gentleman. Aside from his easy-going banter between songs, his musical generosity toward his bandmates, and the stellar renditions of his compositions, he made sure to thank the adoring Lincoln Theater crowd repeatedly throughout his band’s performance on Friday, with a special shout-out to those parents of small children who went through considerable effort to be there. As we were to learn, the Calexico frontman knew firsthand of what he spoke.
Black. The audience was dressed in black. Which seems entirely appropriate for Russian Circles’ music for it feels absolute. It doesn’t compromise, and it is powerful enough to withstand any light. But strangely enough, despite its seemingly impenetrable “wall of sound” feel, their music has soul, an accessibility that kept the audience on Wednesday at the Rock and Roll Hotel engaged and rapt, hanging on every note, eager for more.
Americana is one of those musical labels that can apply to a wide variety of styles (folk, country, rock blues, or gospel) and thus become practically meaningless. However, as a descriptor for Dead Horses’ music, and paired with the band’s origin story, the term takes on a specificity and uniqueness all its own.
Dead Horses — Sarah Vos (vocals/guitar), Daniel Wolff (double bass/vocals), Jamie Gallagher (drums), and Ryan Ogburn (mandolin) — stopped at Songbyrd Music House on Saturday. Touring in support of its third album, My Mother the Moon (released on April 6), a modest but enthusiastic crowd was treated to a lively performance of songs drawing on a wide range of influences that includes folk, bluegrass, gospel, rock, and blues.
Materializing out of the mist and shadows on the 9:30 Club’s stage, the four members of Cigarettes After Sex eased into a set that at once soothed and excited the packed house. Muted lighting and an uncluttered stage produced the perfect atmosphere for what was to come for the next 75 minutes on Monday.
I’ve been a Dixie Dregs fan for as long as I can remember. I’ve still got their original LPs in my vinyl collection and have seen the band perform several times over the years. So, when I first read that the original line-up was reuniting for the Dawn of the Dregs Tour, I made sure that I would be at The Lincoln Theatre on Wednesday.