The weekend got started off right Friday evening with an early show, and I mean early show at the Royale. After a long week, amazing sets by The Belle Brigade, Dawes and Blitzen Trapper seemed to be just the fix.
The Belle Brigade hit the stage at 6 p.m. sharp. While Ethan
and Barbara Gruska are siblings, their voices don’t share the usual high/low combo of most boy/girl duos. So what stands out about their folk rock sound is not their relationship to one another, but their song writing and catchy harmonies. They won me over during their short set.
Around 6:45 p.m., the Royale started really filling up. Taylor Goldsmith walked on stage shortly
there after and jokingly greeted the fans with ‘Good Afternoon!’. As co-headliners of the night, Dawes played a satisfying hour-long set complete with a good mix of new and old songs.
Full of Dawes fans, the audience sang along most of the night. And on How Far We’ve Come it occurred to me that as Dawes fans, we’ve come a long way. One of the first venues that Dawes headlined in Boston was The Great Scott. And now they’re co-headlining at the Royale.
Griffin headed up the band for their cover of Paul Simon’s Kodachrome. And Taylor took back the mic for the closer off of their second album, A Little Bit Of Everything, which was also
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clearly a fan favorite. One of the things that Dawes does best, is take a beautiful and slow song off of their album, and breathe life into it on stage. A Little Bit Of Everything is the perfect example of that. It’s entirely possible that Taylor Goldsmith is one of the only people able to sing ‘mashed potatoes’ and ‘chicken wing’ with genuine heart.
Dawes ended the night with Time Spent in Los Angeles, but not before first leading in a huge sing along of When My Time Comes. There really is nothing more cathartic than screaming ‘when my time comes’ at the top of your lungs at a Dawes concert.
Portland, Oregon natives Blitzen Trapper took the stage next for an hour-plus set that packed in 20 or so tunes. Touring in support of their September release American Goldwing, Blitzen Trapper played a variety of material, old and new, all of which got everyone moving around. Even Griffin came out during the encore to enjoy the last few songs from the crowd.
The show was over by 9:20. Which left plenty of time for after parties. Overall a fantastic way to spend a Friday night.