Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Vancouver Folk Fest Preview

Below is my official first full concert review to kick off the Vancouver Folk Music Festival weekend coverage. The original unchopped column, including some free mp3 downloads, can be found here...

This weekend, I will be tweeting, putting up photos on my Flickr, blogging on behalf of NxEW as well as here.
At the Railway Club on June 3, three artists took to the stage to fundraise for the Vancouver Folk Music Festival as part of the VFMF Revue -- Veda Hille, Dan Mangan and Geoff Berner. Each put on a phenomenal set, and if this is any indication of things to come, this year's festival will be a treat for those living in/near Metro Vancouver.

First to play a set is the quirky Veda Hille. She opened with Lucklucky, which was accompanied by the clacking noises of the toy train overhead at the Railway, to good effect. The song, which included a short ode to the Hockey Night in Canada theme, demonstrated Hille's playful theatrical voice well. She played a couple of covers, which included Neil Young's Transformer Man.

Second on the stage is Dan Mangan. Mangan played an eight song set, which included several songs from his upcoming album such as Tina's Glorious Comeback, The Indie Queens Are Coming (which brought Veda Hille back on stage), You Silly Git (a song inspired by his girlfriend), as well as Basket, which is written for his grandfather. Of course, Mangan wrapped up his set with the catchier-than-herpes Robots, which ended with him holding his guitar aloft while walking through the audience, encouraging a sing-a-long.

The final performer of the night was Geoff Berner. The best way to describe Berner and his set that night would be "perpetually intoxicated, irreverent drinking songs," demonstrated by such songs as The Way That Girl Drinks Beer. However, in more than a few occasions, his meandering voice sharpened their focus towards specific points that he wanted to make. The best example is his song The Dead Children Were Worth It, which criticizes the upcoming Vancouver Olympics in 2010. So while his voice (and mind) may wander and drawl, it does once in a while come back and sucker punch you into paying attention.

See you at the show!

Editor's note: Belated photos from VFMF Revue up on my Flickr HERE.