Hold On Love
The night started off normal enough with opener David Dondero. It was normal singer/songwriter fair... good, but nothing too amazing. A few songs stood out, including his closer about a friend in New Orleans. Story goes, his friend was walking home from his waitering job when a car full of gangsters pulled up next to him and demanded his money (tips). Well, said friend (as the story goes) took off running. The gangsters caught up with him, but the waiter was still carrying his corkscrew from work. Long story short, he stabbed one of the guys in the head... and he twitched. The rest of the song made guesses as to what the three assailants did after they were so rudely thwarted.
After a short break, Azure Ray set up to play... but they weren't alone. With Eric Bachmann on the keys, and the rest Crooked Fingers as the duo's back up band, they lulled the packed house with 45 minutes of gorgeous melodies. I actually found myself liking the organic arrangements of the songs a lot more than the album versions. This duos talent is lost on the overly electronic Hold On Love (at least that's what I think after watching them live). Their performance made a fan out of me.
I almost wanted them to keep playing, even though Crooked Fingers was the band to play next (I've been a fan of Eric's since I was 16). If you get a chance to see them play, you should. Even if the albums haven't struck you as something amazing.
The time between sets was very short, as Orenda Fink and Maria Taylor returned the favor and played with Crooked Fingers. As the first few chords rung out, and Eric's unmistakable voice started, I found myself staring at the stage with a smile on my face. His voice is gruff and comforting at the same time. He is like that hard living grandpa that would love to tell stories.
...What more can I say? The show was wonderful. These two groups complement each other perfectly. The added textures they add to each others songs are more than worth your cover charge. If this tour is rolling through your town make sure to be in attendance, it will be one of the best shows you've seen lately.
CD / LP / MP3
CD / LP / MP3