Band of Horses | Bowery Ballroom | 6.16.2003

Band of Horses put on a really good show Friday night. There are enough reviews of this show out there already but I’ll add a few notes:

• Frontman Ben Bridwell is an exceedingly charming guy, who seemed genuinely happy — almost too happy — to be playing to such an enthusiastic audience. He’s also pretty funny. And the girls were all in love with him. My favorite moment came before the first song, when a droning keyboard and tons of reverb on the mic led Bridwell to realize it sounded a lot like the opening of "Let’s Go Crazy."

• That reverb, which sounds good on the album, seemed a little overdone onstage —  the vocals at least. It was so heavy it was like a karaoke singer who cranks it up ’cause they don’t think they sing well. Bridwell missed a few notes… but his personality made up for it.

• Band of Horses know how to cover a song — do it as if you wrote it. I bet if they hadn’t admitted it was by Hall & Oates, most people wouldn’t have known "You Make My Dreams" was a cover.

• I like that they don’t hold the album arrangements of songs as holy. The slowed-down version of "Wicked Gil" was nice.

• With a sound rightly described as somewhere between The Shins and My Morning Jacket, the fratboys were out in force. How dare they threaten to outnumber elitist indie blogger types!

• Highlight of the show was definitely "The Funeral," where everything came together in one of those transcendent rock show moments so few bands achieve.

Photo swiped from Mediaeater’s Flickr photostream


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