Monday, August 20, 2012

Iron & Wine Twilight Concert Series

Samuel Beam more commonly know by his stage and recording name, Iron & Wine, graced us with his beautifully orchestrated folk songs Thursday at the seventh installment of Salt Lake City's 2012 Summer Twilight Concert Series.

Arriving shortly before the show started, it was apparent that I was going to have to quickly make my way through thousands of people to get anywhere near the front, which I successfully did. If you have ever been to a TCS concert, by now you should know that half of those in attendance are interested in the music and the other half are more interested in socializing (usually found in the back or near the beer tents). With that being said I'm not going to waste anyones time by writing strictly about the audience, largely because if you hang closer to the stage the opportunity to see a well respected artist (Iron & Wine for $5) is present.

I was interested in this show before it started because a handful of Iron & Wine's songs are traditional man and his guitar kind of folk, but at times a little more folk rockin, which is apparent on more recent albums such as The Shepherd's Dog and Kiss Each Other Clean. He walked on stage solo, picked up his acoustic guitar and dove into "Jezebel" from Women King Ep. As he went into a cover of the Postal Service's, "Such Great Heights," it felt like the majority of crowd goers where either cheering or signing along at the top of their lungs. He appeared to be pretty humble throughout the set, I often wondered if he even had a setlist as he kept asking, "let's all get together, what do you want to hear?"

After playing a few songs solo, he was joined by keys and a banjo to play a new song as well as the popular track "Naked as We Came." He played a perfect mix of songs from all of his LP's including a few EP tracks like "Jesus the Mexican Boy" from The Sea & Rhythm Ep. Songs that really stood out for me were "Freedom Hangs Like Heaven," which features a heavier use of the banjo. Also, "Glad Man Singing," sounded great with an array of instruments such as acoustic guitar, keys, electric guitar and drums, which kick in mid song. His diverse folk sound really came through with Kiss Each Other Clean's "Big Burned Hand," which has heavy use of a saxophone. He played around 21 songs throughout the evening, finishing the set solo with "Flightless Bird, American Mouth," for the encore. On a personal note, I figured it would be good, but Iron & Wine really surprised me with his incredible live performance. I'm not sure what, but I feel like I walked away with something and I'm positive others did too.

For more photos visit our photo gallery from TCS Iron & Wine.

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