Written By: Damon Sharkey
Photos by: Scott Harris
reCAP :: The Black Crowes :: 2013.10.22
Oct 23 / Wednesday
Not a lot of groups can turn acoustic sets into electric energy but The Black Crowes did just that on Tuesday evening to close their four-night stint at The Cap. And how! Magic harmonies brought out from the exchange of violins, pedal steel, mandolin and the Crowes' own southern takes on some rock and folk covers turned a mellow group of standees into a happy, foot-stomping company of country slamgrass enthusiasts.
But the melodies were methodic, too. Covering "Let It Bleed" to bring everyone in, Chris Robinson then led through Howling Wolf's "Sitting On Top Of The World" to begin a ramble through some heartfelt love ballads. The band down-shifted into Bob Dylan's "Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You" kicking into more percussive and bass driven grooves, and then threw in "Quinn The Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn)" and a triumphal "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues." By the end of the night, it was a lovefest of applause from audience and stage as the band wove through the sad and true recountings of "Oh Josephine," "Good Friday," "Nonfiction," and "Shady Grove."
The Crowes have truly maintained a glowing ripeness as they have plied their craft, cutting through the saccharine packaging of once begotten nostalgia to reveal a humility of tone and voice that at once ring true and soul-seeking. The crowd's response made all of this obvious. Jackie Green's contribution with a solo of his "Gone Wanderin'" was answered with Rich Robinson's "All Along The Way," rich with metaphysicality, seeking home down the rejuvenating river of companionship and oneness. Rich's brother, Chris, then took the stage with angelic poise to deliver "Someday Past the Sunset," a lacuna to redemption and freedom.
But these heavy themes were made light and airy, warm and comfortable in their intimations, and one was reminded delicately of the transcendence of human spirits without being forced to conclusions. The band's maturity places them in the higher orders of musicianship and lyricists whose songs they indeed sang. The Capitol Theatre's exceptional setting and sound dynamics made real an enchanting passage. They closed their set with "Wiser Time" as keys and violin solos brought wings to the air and, with fitting lyrics, ushered everyone into a bright tomorrow.
The Capitol Theatre Photo Gallery
Photos by: Scott Harris
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