Elvis Perkins in Dearland, 11-18-2009

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A Primer on my Passion for Perkins (<- holy alliteration) I had waited on this show since early 2007, the first time I heard "While You Were Sleeping." The tune is beautiful in its simplicity, but it was the song's lyrics that really caught me. There are a trove of lyrics that I could tell you are lovely, or witty, or poetic, but these are the only ones that I could claim feel as if they came straight from my heart. The lines that particularly grab me:
"So I waited for the riddled sky
to be solved again by sunrise
And I've made a death suit for life
For my father's ill widowed wife
Did you have that strangest dream before you woke
Cause in your gown you had the butterfly stroke
Did it escape you like some half told joke?
When you reached for your plume of smoke..."

Elvis sings this (and many other songs) with such a distinct sadness, one that I feel only those who have suffered a profound loss could completely understand. Ten years after I had such a loss, it still takes a daily effort for me to untangle my emotions and move forward. As cheesy as it may sound, this song reminds me to do that.

Elvis at Zanzabar

This was my first time to Zanzabar, Louisville. As I understand it, the place was recently renovated. Kudos to the designers--it looks amazing. Zanzabar is a great venue. We arrived early and met Erin for dinner. Elvis and the guys had the same idea. We saw them having a pre-show snack across from the bar. Our food (especially the homemade chips) was great, and they have a decent selection of brews as well.

The Woes and A.A. Bondy supported Elvis that night. Let me tell you--The Woes are one of the must underrated bands on the indie scene. They were AMAZING. Have a listen, and you will thank me later. I can't really tell you much about A.A. Bondy's show, except that it was so relaxing I felt like I was at home in bed. I'll leave the decision on whether that was good or bad up to you.

After the crowd cleared from A.A.'s show, I walked up to the stage area. After a few more people shifted, I was more than happy to take a place front-and-center. When Elvis and the guys took the stage, I was literally about two feet away from him. Elvis surprised me by kicking off the set with "While You Were Sleeping". I tried not to get weepy. I mean, isn't that bad concert etiquette to burst into tears right in front of the songwriter? I choked back my (happy) tears and enjoyed the theatrics of the song. Dearland came into the song one-by-one, like they did in the Letterman performance a few years back. Beautiful. The show went on with more of my favorites, like Shampoo, and featured all of the new songs from the Doomsday EP. Elvis closed the show with the title track from the EP. All of Dearland, as well as a few members of the Woes, joined Elvis on the song, but played amongst the audience. It was truly a unique experience. Kele ran into the audience when I saw Bloc Party, but I had definitely never had members of the band playing directly into my ears. Perfect.

After the show, I was lucky enough to meet Brigham Brough (bass,vocals, saxophone for Dearland) and Elvis. They couldn't have been nicer. Brigham actually approached us to talk after the show, which I figure is pretty much unheard of. He asked me how I first heard them, and I really had to think about it. I finally remembered that my first listen was Elvis' Daytrotter session back in 07. After trying to make them understand the geography of Kentucky, making my argument for them to play in Lexington, and having my vinyl copy of "Ash Wednesday" signed, we hit I-64. Truly an unforgettable show.

Some pictures I snapped. CANNOT believe I didn't bring my DSLR.



Beautiful use of alliteration and (I believe parallelism). Kathy Spears would be proud.

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