Owen – 10/9

October 11, 2009

The Mercury Lounge is my favorite venue of all that I’ve been to – it’s incredibly small, with a stage whose height is only just above my knees, and has great sound. It’s in an awesome area of the city, too, on E. Houston. It was perfect for the Manchester Orchestra show held there last March, and it was also fantastic for Mike Kinsella and his acoustic guitar on Friday night (Of course, the only down side is that most of the shows there are 21+, making those who haven’t been/aren’t able to see bands there because of their age resent it. Understandable).

When we arrived at the venue, Mike was sitting on the ground against the wall outside of the venue, as if he was just an Owen fan waiting for the doors to open. Most people on line didn’t even realize it was him, and as we stood by him, talking to him, a guy next to us even started talking about how Mike was “that guy from American Football.” It was pretty hilarious.

The One AM Radio opened, and were very pleasant to listen to, though I had only heard their music an hour before the show started. Made up of three members, the band played mellow songs and really were talented. The woman, Fontaine, played accordian, which made me appreciate their sound even more. Also, their male vocalist kept his foot on a tambourine and would bring his heel down on it staying perfectly on beat, as he played guitar riffs that weren’t simple and sang. It was impressive.

Owen was next, and I sat on the stage for the entire set. He opened with New Leaves, and it was wonderful. The Sad Waltzes of Pietro Crespi, One of These Days, Bad News, Curtain Call, Good Friends Bad Habits, A Trenchant Critique, Bags of Bones, Skin and Bones, Playing Possum for a Peek, and a few others also made up the set. Though every song sounded incredible acoustic, I would have really liked to hear the songs off of New Leaves that he played performed with a full band, to hear the keys and violins.

Between each song, Mike asked if anyone wanted to talk about anything, which is always great during shows, since it makes people shout out ridiculous things. People mostly wanted to talk about Mike’s beard, Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize, bears, and his baby.

The set went by too quickly, but I’m glad I was able to hear it – what a great show.

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