The Avett Brothers at Somerset Amphitheater, 6/29/2013

Categories: Last Night
Photo by Steven Cohen
Avett Fest
with the Avett Brothers, Brandi Carlile, Dr. Dog, and the Wheeler Brothers
Somerset Amphitheater, Somerset, WI
Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Look at that sky," Brandi Carlile instructed the crowd as the sun was making its way behind the hill of the Somerset Amphitheater. With the rain out of the way, summer was officially on the horizon when Brandi Carlile and the Avett Brothers took the stage on a perfect Saturday night. Both bands, along with openers Dr. Dog and the Wheeler Brothers, brought a summery set of songs, some made for dancing and some made to tug at the heartstrings.

See Also:
Slideshow: The Avett Brothers at Somerset Amphitheater

Brandi Carlile truly loves the Twin Cities -- Somerset being close enough to the Cities to bring out a crowd excited to see her -- so she was a perfect candidate for the bill. The 32-year-old has been flying high on her latest release Bear Creek for a year now and has graced this market many times in the last year.

Each time she has been spot-on with her performances, so nothing out of the ordinary happened. Each note was hit perfectly, each story was perfectly timed, and each song perfectly carried out. You almost want to hear her hit a wrong note to see if she is infallible, but knowing Carlile, she would probably take it all in stride. Her claim to being awkward was relaid about her interaction with Scott Avett upon meeting him backstage. She said to him, "'I think you and I read the same books.' Do you ever meet someone famous, and you say [to yourself], 'Why did I say that shit?' Because I've been obsessing over your lyrics, Scott."

Photo by Steven Cohen
Brandi is not the only one who has been obsessing over the Avett Brothers' lyrics. The band has been around for many years, but hit it big with the Rick Rubin-produced I and Love and You in 2009. Since then, the brothers and company have not slowed down and opened with the lively "Live and Die" off The Carpenter. The song contains the proven successful formula that the brothers have perfected with its tempo changes, starting slow and building into something bigger and exciting, adding instruments along the way.

Their set consisted of songs that spanned their career, a balanced mix that revisited 2006 with "Distraction #74" and showcased their rock and roll side with "Paul Newman vs. the Demons." "Laundry Room" is a melancholy piece built around a crumbling relationship, and includes the most poetic, poignant lyrics "I wish that you would always stay, Last night I dreamt the whole night long, I woke with a head full of songs, I spent the whole day, I wrote 'em down but it's a shame, Tonight I'll burn the lyrics, 'cause every chorus was your name."

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