Soooo, Neko Case played a live show at the Edgefield amphitheater last evening, and I was among the fortunates there to experience it. The show featured three layered, interesting new songs that I hope to see released on an album soon, and the back-to-back performances of "Fox Confessor Brings the Flood" and "Vengeance is Sleeping" were, for my part, the highlight of the night, if not the month.
Neko justifiably uses a particular moment from "Fox Confessor" to showcase the power of her voice -- the lines
Will I ever see you again? / Will there be no one above me to put my faith in?...but even as I knew it was coming, last night's rendition of these lines was stunning. Apart from those words as phrased in her voice, you could have heard a mouse sneak across the Edgefield grass.
I could easily have taken very good photos of the performers and the lovely venue, but I contributed to the well-mannered mien of the audience by honoring the no-photography rule.
Well-mannered, I said? Yes, this was by far the most well-behaved concert audience I've ever joined. People were downright civilized in the way they made room for each other, drank, ate, and smoked only what they were permitted to drink, eat, and smoke (within reasonable limits), and declined to insert any hooliganism into the affair. It was weird. Maybe Neko Case fans aren't idiots? I'd like to think so.
Close, I say? Yes, I could easily have tossed a football to Neko Case from where I was sitting for most of the show, and could have done so even more easily from where I moved during the last five or six songs -- and I could even more easily have tossed one to vocalist Kelly Hogan. I probably could have reached either with my underwear from the closer spot, but as I said, this was a well-mannered concert, not the sort of event in which people pull off their undergarments and throw them on stage, no matter how much they might wish to.
Maybe I was imagining it, but I thought I saw Ben Gibbard and Zooey Deschanel admiring the show from backstage. They, too, held back on the urge to throw any underwear or otherwise make spectacles of themselves. Maybe I was only imagining it was those two I saw, so chalk it up to the way Neko Case tends to magnify and elevate the familiar.