Shakey Graves - As I stepped into line tonight, they said the person in front of me had the last ticket as it was now sold out. Forunately, they had my name on the list and had space (barely), so I made it in a little late to see the opening solo act. Although I caught about half the set, I immediately was sorry I didn't catch it all as Shakey Graves is one interesting 'gentleman from Texas'. He sings, plays acoustic guitar and kicks at a kick drum (while standing), yet if you close your eyes, you swear you can hear a whole band roaring away. the fuzzboxes in use creates this strong sound for his heartland songs. The songs are good enough to work for acoustic busking, but I am happier to hear them fill the big club so well. He was over huge with the crowd where you could hear the building enthusiasm during the set. He is clearly one to watch for future tours.
The Devil Makes Three - When you have a trio of standup bass, acoustic guitars or guitar and banjo with three voices (one female) you can probably guess the general direction of the sound. And you would certainly hit their sound because this band has a wonderfully broad blend of Americana taking us through folk, Appalachian, Western swing, rockabilly, country rock, and many more. The songs are rich and hearty and the playing crisp, quick, and enthusiastic. They vary the rhythms, although most are infectiously toe tapping. They add a guest violinist for a few numbers which adds even more interesting sounds to the mix. Their vocals, personality, and steady enthusiasm pulls the crowd right into the hootenanny they created here tonight. I can't really find anything to fault here tonight. This is a strong band that plays in a comforting manner that will get a lot of fans from a lot of different places and genres joining in.
Quote of the Night: From the Devil Makes Three at 8:49pm, 50 minutes into their set... "Boy, it is early, isn't it?"
Yes it is, although at least the club started things early enough tonight, unlike Tuesday night's show. The bands' sets did not feel rushed and they left plenty of time to get set up for their 10:30pm show. So this one worked out ok for me (and if there was someone I wanted to see at the Velvet Lounge or Black Cat or DC9, I could have headed over there just after, but not this night).