SXSW: Third edition

The Stage on Sixth.  1 pm.

The Lumineers.

You know those inherent lines between the performers and the audience?  Well they became quite blurry during the Lumineers’ playful set at the Paste day party on Friday.

These five Denver musicians have an energy on stage, happy and carefree, that dissolves any ego often intrinsic in performers.  Their music, with colors of honky-tonk, ragtime and blues rock, is catchy to the point that even the band members couldn’t resist singing along to themselves throughout the set.

There was singing along happening in the crowd as well, at the urging of lead singer Wesley Schultz.

Taking a moment before the final song, “Stubborn Loving”, Schultz did a quick run through of the chorus to ensure that the audience knew their parts.  Not surprisingly, the cooperative crowd picked it up quickly and as Schultz conducted the volume through the final chorus, it was clear that the room was packed full of fellow musicians.

The lines were literally blurred when, halfway through the set, the band (in a bounty of plaid shirts, small-brim fedoras and a set of suspenders) planted themselves in the middle of the crowd for an a capella jam of their hit song “Ho Hey”.  Again, parts were doled out, with one side of the room cued to chant “Hey!” and the other side to answer “Ho!”.  It was pure jubilee.

The short set did well to represent the band’s range of sounds and songs.  They’d dial up the ragtime for one diddy with bright piano on the keyboard and then switch to a haunting cello line and driving drums for a moodier ballad.  For good measure, they also threw in “Slow It Down”, a duet between Schultz on guitar and Jeremiah Fraites on tambourine, wailing together in two part vocal harmony.

The collaboration happening all around turned what was a concert into a celebration.  Based on the sound of things and the anticipation of an album on April 3rd, these folks have much to celebrate.


One thought on “SXSW: Third edition

  1. Pingback: The Lumineers Are On Their Way Back East | THIS WAS GOOD

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