It wasn’t February, 1878 or January, 1979. It was July, 2012 on the twenty-eighth day at The Glass House in Pomona, CA. I, who calls himself a Kevin Devine fan and a mewithoutYou fan was seeing both for the first time. I was very excited. This was the third show for me at the Glass House within the span of a week and I now live about 2 hours, give or take traffic, from the venue. Buried Beds was the opener and I was unfamiliar with their music. Still, I was looking forward to hearing them and experiencing new music. My friend and I ended up underestimating the time and missing Buried Beds’ set altogether (cue sad face.)
Though only two acts remained, to be fair, they were Kevin Devine and mewithoutYou, so it would definitely be worth it. We shuffled in and Kevin Devine took the stage. Though there were certainly a vocal few around me who knew his music, I got the sense the rest of the crowd was either very respectful or had no idea who he was. Early on, he launched into “A Story, A Sneak.” Here is video evidence:
Yes, you’ll hear the aforementioned “vocal few” in the video. These guys were fans, but they were annoying and probably high and almost ruined it for the rest of us. But nothing could ruin it for me. I was finally seeing Kevin Devine live. I get to see him again because I bought a ticket to see Bad Books at the Troubadour in October. He put on a great performance. There is something to be said about a great stripped down set with just a voice and a guitar and I’d be hard pressed to find a better lyricist and performer with this much passion in a solo show. Sure, I would place City and Colour higher on my list of favorites than this one, but mostly because KD’s set was shorter and he was not headlining. Speaking of thought-provoking lyrics, here is one of the best examples from his repertoire, “Another Bag of Bones.”
Then, just because he knew I missed out on Buried Beds, Kevin brought up Eliza Jones of Buried Beds to duet a song called “Cupid.” It was cutesy, but more in a Walk Hard “Let’s Duet” way than a Walk The Line “Hey, wait a minute, Reese Witherspoon sounds better than June Carter” kind of way. Take a listen:
Eliza would later make an appearance on keyboards with mewithoutYou. Kevin Devine played a few newer songs and a few older songs. He did not play “Me and My Friends” which the guy in front of me loudly suggested, but he did play “Enter Sandman” by freaking Metallica. Yes, it was a joke, but it was also kind of awesome because it was so unexpected. After that, he played “All of Everything Erased”, which you can see here. As you’ll see, he got really into the song, which was cool to see live.
He also played “Cotton Crush”, which I did not record because if you like him, you should really go see him in concert and I like to enjoy the concert myself and not watch through a tiny screen the whole time. It was a short set, but it was fantastic. After the show, I got to talk to him for a few minutes at the Merch table. He was really down to earth, nice and actually took the time to talk to me and listen to what I had to say. If by any chance you read this: Thanks, Kevin Devine and keep making great, thought-provoking, intelligent music. Oh, here’s him saying hi:
Next came the main event: mewithoutYou. Their set was like a rollercoaster. Start to finish, energy, passion and delight upon the faces of the individuals in the crowd. I didn’t get a lot of footage of their set, because it really has to be experienced wholly, without video or cell phones clouding the experience. I did let my friend film a little bit and he did his best, okay? Here’s his version of filming
a song two songs:
Though I didn’t film much of their set, I did get “The Angel of Death Came to David’s Room” because it’s one of my favorite songs from them, especially lyrically. It’s a bit simplistic and Biblically based, but quite simply the message is we’re all going to die someday, so live your life. Here’s the footage I got. Enjoy!
After the show, I bought Buried Beds’ Tremble The Sails on vinyl and have since listened to it. They’re awesome. I will definitely have to catch them some other time. As I closed out my week/month of Glass House concerts, I felt equal parts excited, accomplished and tired. It took me so long to recover, that I’m just now posting this about a month later. That or, I don’t know, laziness or something. I hope you enjoyed and will check out these bands if you haven’t and find out when they’ll be in a town/city/state near you and experience if for yourself. (Still wish I could have seen mewithoutYou back when they opened for Brand New and Thrice. Oh well. Hindsight’s 20/20.)
- Show Review: MewithoutYou At The Troubadour In Los Angeles On July 27th, 2012 (earbits.com)
- mewithoutYou at Hawthorne Theatre – 7/22/12 (twistedwirepdx.com)
- Live: Kevin Devine – “Brother’s Blood” (dontleavetowngavin.com)
- mewithoutYou: Ten Stories (Review) (popmatters.com)
- Don’t Bore Us, Get to the Chorus: Emery Returns to the Glass House (thestereolounge.com)
- What to Do When You’re Undead: Armor For Sleep Takes Over The Glass House (thestereolounge.com)