Last night I saw Elvis Perkins (in Dearland) at the Cafe du Nord. I got there a little bit before he went on when they were finishing setting up and sound-checking their mics. I was a bit surprised because they had large diaphragm condensers for his vocals, the harmonium and as an overhead for the drums (?!).
When Elvis and co. came out, they pretty quickly launched into “While You Were Sleeping” which was fine with me, as it’s my favorite track off of his album Ash Wednesday. The band consisted of Elvis on guitar and vocals, a guy that switched between guitar, harmonium and trombone; an upright/ electric bassist and a drummer/ percussionist. Everyone sang back up vocals. “Ash Wednesday” followed soon afterwards. His sound from the get-go was really good. His voice was clear and the mix was nice.
His set quickly veered away from album songs. “Weeping Pilgrim” was a great song. I think it’s a traditional song. It was rollicking and fun. On a few songs including that one, the drummer got out from behind the set and played a marching bass drum with a mallet on one side and a set of jingles (like on a tambourine, but in a line) on the other.
All in all, the show was a lot of fun and the band and sound were good. I’d definitely recommend it if you like Ash Wednesday or if you’re on the fence about Elvis Perkins.
Perkins did do a couple things that could be taken as arrogant or endearing, depending on how you look at it. The one that I’m mostly thinking of was before the last song he said “Well, the last song before we go backstage and you clap for a while and we come back out.” and then later while people were clapping he stuck out his head out of the dressing room and said “louder!” It was a little much
more photos after the jump