Thursday, June 18, 2009

Trying My Best to Love Jenny Lewis

I am a sucker for a beautiful girl with a guitar. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that I am a fan of Jenny Lewis who is one of the most gorgeous and talented women in music today. I had the pleasure of seeing her at the House of Blues in Boston on June 10, 2009 and it was quite a performance. Jenny Lewis puts a lot of heart and soul into her indie folk and it translated beautifully to the live stage. Accompanied by an impressive ensemble of musicians, she got right into it with a lively performance of "See Fernando" from her latest album Acid Tongue.

Throughout the set, Jenny Lewis and the band would immediately follow one highlight with another. The juxtaposition of slow and fast material added to the experience and created a smooth flow that kept the audience's attention through the entire set. The somber ballad "Sing a Song for them" was chased perfectly by the lively "Jack Killed Mom". After getting the audience worked up, Jenny Lewis provided my favorite moment of the night: an intimate and stripped down version of "Trying My Best to Love You". This involved Jenny Lewis taking center stage gently strumming a guitar while guitarist Danielle Haim and drummer Barbara Gruska provided gorgeous harmonization. The audience remained perfectly silent and respectful throughout the entire song which is a rarity these days. Anyone who wasn't completely entranced by the intimacy of such a performance should probably have checked their pulse. Experience it for yourself by viewing the video I posted below of a similar performance at Cat's Cradle in Carrboro NC two days after the one I saw.

Jenny Lewis continued to play a loaded set and even played a new song called "Just like Zeus". It was much more active than the material on Acid Tongue and displayed much promise for future releases. She ended the night by playing an encore of four songs starting with an acoustic version of the Rilo Kiley song "Silver Lining" which transitioned flawlessly into "Acid Tongue". Next up was "The Big Wave" before finally finishing with "Born Secular", a song that I was waiting to hear all night and my favorite off of her 2006 release, Rabbit Fur Coat. In all, it was a very impressive show and far exceeded my expectations. Jenny Lewis and her band certainly have something special in their hands.

Jenny Lewis:
See Fernando
The Charging Sky
You Are What You Love
Pretty Bird
Sing a Song for Them
Jack Killed Mom
Trying My Best to Love You
Rise Up With Fists!!
Just Like Zeus
Handle with Care
The Next Messiah
Silver Lining
Acid Tongue
The Big Wave
Born Secular

Acid Tongue with bonus Japanese tracks:

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