Show Review: Kevin Morby @ The Mohawk 9/16
A humid Saturday night brought a big crowd to the Mohawk to check out a great touring musician in the form of Kevin Morby. Riding high off the release of his latest album,City Music, he brought along fellow Woodsist artist, Shannon Lay, to open the night.
Read on for some thoughts on how the evening went down.
Shannon Lay kicked off the night with her quiet folksy tunes, with just her and her guitar taking center stage. The crowd grew as she went through her set of tracks, but the growing numbers failed to be hooked by the set. It seemed a little too down-tempo for most, and the night gave way to show talkers and dis-interested crowds. Not to the failure of Lay’s pretty vocals or delicate guitar playing, but rather in what seemed like a desire from the crowd for a little bit louder music to get the energy going.
Early on, Kevin Morby remarked that he was fairly confident that this show was the largest crowd he’d headlined while on tour, and his showmanship proved that he was ready for this kind of growth. Having seen him about a year ago at the Sidewinder, he seemed more at ease and commanding on stage. Though his laid back folk rock doesn’t seem that it warrants this kind of front man, it made for a far more interesting set than in the past. Morby bobbed around the stage, donning a full white suit with music notes embroidered on it, opening with the title track from his newest record. Accompanied by his band, the new music sounded great in the live setting, the slight more edge and bite on the music translating well. This opened the band up for more instrumental solo-jam moments and the set was a variety of fast and slow songs.
Highlights of the sixteen song set for me were tracks “1234,” “Come To Me Now,” “Beautiful Strangers,” and “I Have Been To The Mountain.” “1234” had the pep and sharp edge that the studio album hints at, while “Come To Me Now” brought the sultry and beautiful stillness to the evening that was mirrored by the humid and stagnant air. “I Have Been To The Mountain,”probably my favorite Morby track, was different in the live setting sans horns, but the band dialed it up on the guitar licks and intensity to make it a true rock tune. Morby ended his proper set with his track “Beautiful Strangers,” which he put out last year with proceeds going to Everytown For Gun Safety.
All in all it was a wonderful way to spend a Saturday night. Make sure you check out Morby’sCity Musicif you haven’t already. It’s a good one.