Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Minneapolis Bon Iver Concert Review and Set List

Last night I attended the Bon Iver concert at the Orpheum Theater in Minneapolis.  This was a great double bill with Kathleen Edwards, and I have a separate review of Kathleen Edwards' set which you can see as well.   

Bon Iver, for this incarnation, was Justin Vernon joined by eight other players.  The band was big, diverse, and talented.  Multiple players played multiple instruments, including obscure things like clarinet and French horn.  The era of the large band is definitely in, with Arcade Fire and the Decemberists doing it, and Bon Iver installed it as well.

Only, it never sounded better.  Not even close.

This was easily a top ten concert for me.  The sound and musicianship of the players combined with Vernon's haunting vocals and lyrics were mesmerizing.  This is an artist and band at the height of their craft, and it made for an incredible night.  Many of the older songs were reworked to take advantage of the players, and the newer songs tweaked slightly as well. 

How refreshing to listen to a band of such talent! 

Here is the set list, to the best of my recollection:

  • Perth - Great rocker that set the tone 
  • Minnesota, WI  
  • Holocene  
  • Towers - beautiful version 
  • Creature Fear  - Reworked and really strong 
  • Beach Baby 
  • Hinnom, TX 
  • Wash.  
  • Blood Bank - Reworked as a rocker - incredible version
  • Re: Stacks  
  • Michicant 
  • Calgary - Fairly true to the studio version and really strong 
  • Beth/Rest  
  • For Emma  
  • Flume - Perhaps my favorite song of the evening 
  • Skinny Love - Had the crowd standing and singing along 
  • The Wolves (Act I and II) - Loud and vocal close
If you are a music fan, shell out whatever you have to in order to see this band on the current tour.  You will not be disappointed.  

What an incredible show...

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