Iron and Wine with The Head and the Heart @ In The Venue 06.03

Posted June 9, 2011 in
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Iron and Wine
On Friday I took a bike ride down to In The Venue to see Iron and Wine and openers, The Head and the Heart. THATH, (as was stenciled on their amps) blew up in their hometown of Seattle and signed to Sub Pop Records almost immediately after forming. Known for powerful, larger-than-life vocal harmonies, the band accented the grandeur of their set by constantly swapping instruments with each other showcasing the talents of the various members. Though I had only heard of them recently, it seemed I was the only one who lacked a lyrical knowledge of the band. It was a huge sing-a-long throughout the set, though the band frequently left the crowd grasping for notes they could not reach. Rarely do you see a band this new, who appear so at home on the stage, even going so far as kicking off their shoes and dancing around, flirting with the crowd as they leaned out to croon to them.

Having seen Iron and Wine previously at the Twilight Concert Series, I expected a night of slow, sugary folk music and a lot of Mormon girls getting wet in the pants for Mr. Sam Beamthe man behind the magic. Iron and Wine is one of those extremely prolific artists who seems to be constantly writing and recording. Depending on which albums he pulls material from, he may be solo or with a full band. As the band took the stage in '70s suits and v-neck, button down shirts, I quickly noticed that this would be a much different set than I had heard at Gallivan. If I counted right, Iron and Wine consisted of nine members for this show. Beam's famous beard had been trimmed and his hair was kinda cut in a pompadour. He was there to get down and dirty. Surprisingly, the band quickly jumped into a set reminiscent of '70s jam bands with a touch of yacht rock. Everything was extremely polished and smooth. Dual drummers kicked out some super funky rhythms all night and definitely drew their fair share of attention. My favorite part of the lineup was the three-man horn section, which some of the songs featured very prominently. Both THATH and Iron and Wine were generous performers, letting each member of their respective bands have their moment in the spotlight. If I could say one thing that summed up Iron and Wine, it would be the lyrics from "Evening on the Ground" that were belted out during a break in the music, "We were born to fuck each other one way or another." I wouldn't be surprised at all if by next tour Iron and Wine is playing straight up funk.
Photos:
Iron and Wine THATH. Photo: April Brimer