Charlie Parr strolled onto the stage at the Black Cat and promptly sat down, plugged in his guitar, and started playing. What followed was a fantastic and intimate performance that I will never forget.
Crisp waves of psychedelic guitar washed over the audience as Colin Newman, guitarist and vocalist for legendary English band Wire, peered out from under a ballcap. In his soothing accent, Colin sings the cryptic words of “Silver/Wire,” which could perhaps be about making choices for moving ahead (silver) or being weighted down by your past (lead) maybe.
Whichever interpretation, Wire is a band that certainly continues to move ahead *while also* embracing its significant past. And the small but intensely loyal crowd at Black Cat on Monday night wanted it all — silver and lead.
Big Thief have recently released Capacity, their second full-length LP, on Saddle Creek, but the songs on the album belie a maturity and songcraft light years into the future. On Saturday, Big Thief played many of these new tunes to a sold-out crowd at the Black Cat.
Ted Leo is well known to us in DC, as he formed Ted Leo and the Pharmacists here in 1999. Wherever Ted goes, he always comes back to DC, and such is the case next week! On Friday, Sept. 8, Ted Leo releases The Hanged Man, his 13th studio album overall but his first under solely his name. Then one week later, he drops by Black Cat to play two headlining shows on Friday, Sept. 15, and Saturday, Sept. 16.
If you didn’t know that Sheer Mag had only formed in 2014, and you heard their music, you might well think they were a classic rock band! If DC didn’t yet know Sheer Mag, the band introduced themselves in a matchless show at the Black Cat on Wednesday.