By: Matthew Burke
“You’re on fire, Kevin… these girls think you’re a babe, Kevin” a supportive heckler calls out as Kevin Morby and his band dip into the the gradual build-up of “Singing Saw”.
Saturday night was the final show to a 32-day tour in support Morby’s latest album Singing Saw.
Bolo-ties, blazers and safari attire played its part, but it was the musical performances that grabbed you by the horns. Big Thief began the night with stellar musicianship consisting of Adrianne Lenker’s slow, haunting melodic estrogen— her dominant vocals cut through the music like butter, demanding your attention— and lead-guitarist, Buck Meek’s earth worm maneuvering casted a spell upon the crowded Casbah. Their 90’s fuzzy-grunge essence paralleled a Mazzy Star, which charmed right into Kevin Morby’s crispy folk-rock. Morby’s latest album has picked up quite a bit of steam with flourishing feed-back, which brought in new curiosity, as the frontman himself admitted he had not played in front of so many people in San Diego. The songs were played to perfection, nobody on stage doing too much, even lead-guitarist Meg Duffy’s shredding was like porridge; tasteful and just right. Mr. Morby and co. mentioned being a little worn-out from the extensive tour, but that didn’t seem apparent as more shout-outs of pleasure spilled from crowd, “You’re insane right now, Kevin… you’re the man, Kevin”. Comments like these added comic relief to the downtime, allowing a sense of innocence to set in.
From Kevin Morby’s calm solo rendition of Townes Van Zandt’s “No Place to Fall” to the dancing bass and guitar groove that put hair in your beard in “I Have Been to the Mountain”, the Texas native spewed variety. Big Thief’s ghostly demeanor added to the ambiance as well, offering a nice night cap to a long summer week.