Okkervil River, Campo Bravo, and Amy Rude

Plush, Friday, March 11

Okkervil River drove out of their way--in one day--to hit Tucson first on their tour to support their new album, Black Sheep Boy (which comes out in April on Jagjaguwar), because, they admitted, they love Tucson.

And Tucson loved them back; there was a good-sized crowd that sang along and bought the band beers as Will Sheff played his acoustic guitar with his eyes closed. Sheff even got the whole crowd to yell a hello into a cell phone to a band member who wasn't with them. The rest of the band sings along, jumps around, laughs and talks as they switch instruments (pedal steel, trumpet, melodica, organ, guitars, tambourine). They keep a tight grasp on Sheff's songs, which twist and shout in their country-pop beds. The drums and guitar were a bit too tinny, but Okkervil River is the kind of band that can play through and over minor technicalities like that; the songs are warm enough and just messy enough to compensate.

The band played several songs from their last record, Down the River of Golden Dreams, and a few from the new one. They tried to end their set with "Kansas City," from their first record, and Sheff, even after all that warm mid-range singing, strapped on a harmonica and sang even more, while blood ran down his face from some kind of crazy, live-show, self-inflicted accident. It wasn't quite enough for the crowd, who, in their happy-drunken state, egged two more songs out of the band even after that.

Come to think of it, Friday night's lineup at Plush was like three stages of drunkenness: Amy Rude, who can kick up her boots and dance while she wails and plays her acoustic guitar, was eyes-glazed-over, sad drunk. Campo Bravo, the brainchild of Mark Matos, who does a little-foot dance while he plays, played fleshed-out, swirling alt.country that was what's-the-meaning-of-it-all, introspective drunk. Strangely enough, during a night of country-themed music, there was quite a lot of wailing guitar going on. And then Austin's Okkervil River sent the crowd bouncing in their shoes to the moon, Alice.


More by Annie Holub


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Know Your Product

    Stars Pick Their Top 5! This week: Jim Waters
    • Mar 29, 2018
  • Battle Acts: Sgt. Pepper Then vs. Sgt. Pepper Now

    We have no Summer of Love to ponder, no Vietnam War to protest, no miracle drug that's going to save us. But we do have an unpopular president and Sgt. Pepper to marvel over all over again. It's not the same, but it kinda is, and that's about the best splendid time that can be guaranteed for all in 2017.
    • Jun 8, 2017

The Range

Together We Win at The Rialto

Hoodie Allen to Perform at Club Congress on Sept. 25

More »

Latest in Live

Facebook Activity

© 2018 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation