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She huffed, she puffed, and she blew the house down

Posted by James Reed  November 11, 2009 03:36 PM

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Forty-five minutes after the openers exited, Neko Case and her band took the stage at the Wilbur Theatre last night. Actually, Case sort of stalked it. She apologized for being late, but she had a good excuse she wanted to share right away: "We were having a fight with the promoter, and I could not be angrier right now."

Uh-oh.

Case, who was obviously perturbed but still gracious to the audience, didn't elaborate so much as she stewed for the first few songs. It was fascinating to witness her exorcising her frustration, playing her guitar "like a hockey player," she humorously noted. Besides, a little bit of angst suits the nature of her feisty and fiery songs.

After one final expletive-laden comment, she moved on and so did the show. Case is on a victory lap for this year's "Middle Cyclone," but the performance stretched well beyond the new material. Kelly Hogan, Case's affable sidekick and harmony partner, jokingly called some of the older songs "deep cuts," including a stirring rendition of "Deep Red Bells," from 2002's "Blacklisted."

The performance had a splash of local color, too: Hogan and Case dedicated the show to Arthur Ganson, the Stoneham-based sculptor (and former MIT artist-in-residence) whose "Machine" series they both admire and claim as an inspiration.

The evening began with an evocative set from Calexico's Joey Burns and John Convertino, who coaxed an impressive range of moods and emotions from their unassuming setup of just guitar and drums.

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1 comments so far...
  1. You wouldn't happen to have the setlist, would you?

    Posted by Ambrose Chapel November 13, 09 02:41 PM
 

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