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Thursday, June 03, 2010

To the Avett Brothers at ArtPark last night. They were opening for Les Claypool, so we got a truncated set, and the humidity seemed to be causing them problems too, but it was still worth the trip to Lewiston. We learned about the Avetts from EGA, who became a fan when her beau introduced her to their music; I get the sense that they are more or less his They Might Be Giants. In any event we've been listening to them since before Rick Ruben came on board and added drums, and feel as though we have the right to be a little proprietary. What are they like, you ask? Maybe a little like if James and Livingston Taylor had started out as a brother act, with more romantic yearning and a little less existential angst, a kind of Blue Ridge alt-country. Their instrumentation gives a clue-- in addition to guitar, bass and banjo (and sometimes drums) they have a full-time cellist. Their vocals have that high lonesome quality, and their lyrics have a knack for catching me by surprise:

"I wanna have pride like my mother has,
And not like the kind in the bible that turns you bad.
And I wanna have friends that I can trust,
that love me for the man I’ve become and not the man that I was."

One is tall and thin with a beard, and one is tall and thin with long hair like Jesus. Like James Taylor they can rock out a bit-- perhaps they rock out a little better, although that's a pretty low bar. ArtPark was in some ways a very good venue for them. I got the sense that a significant part of the crowd was there to see them rather than Claypool. They knew the songs, they danced in the aisles, they were seriously into it. (Jeff Miers says they played "I and Love and You". They did not, which suggests that perhaps Jeff was working from a setlist rather from notes. Perhaps he acquired this reviewing methodology from Janice Okun.

| Comments:
Are you sure Jeff Miers really says they played that?
 
It's in the review I linked to.
 
It *was* in the review-- the on-line version has changed. Well played Mr. Miers.
 
I can not believe it, your article solved my problem so fast
 

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