Monday, July 27, 2009

Bon Iver Live At The Galway Arts Festival, 23/07/2009 REVIEW & BOOTLEG

What an amazing night to be part of, The Arts Festival was in its second last night of 2009 and the Big Top was being filled up to witness Bon Iver. I found myself a spot right at the front surrounded by giddy students. The organisers came out to conduct a Guinness World Record using the crowd. I have always wanted to be in that book so was quite excited to take part; they had the whole crowd perform a bow on the count of three making us involved in the biggest bow performed in a tent! We were first treated to a superb set from Alela Diane, whose soulful alt country rock kept the crowd entertained before the big act. She was joined on stage by her Father on guitar and Alina Hardin on Backing Vocals. I got her album “To Be Still” prior to the gig and it is well worth checking out. She put on a great show and ill be looking forward to hearing more from her.
Then on came Bon Iver to much applause and screaming from the crowd and got straight down to the business at hand, as soon as the first few bars of Flume were played a silence was reached from the crowd that were almost in awe of the lyrics and sound apart from one or two who decided to talk throughout for some moronic reason. I was introduced late to Justin Vernons album "For Emma, Forever Ago" back in April 2008, Ever since then the album has been constantly in rotation. Bon Iver made it to my list of bands I must see before I die. I was really glad to tick him off the list. The gig tonight was simple flawless and a serious contender for a top ten slot in the best gigs I have ever witnessed, just the emotions that were laid out in front of us was awe inspiring. The lyrics are quite amazing and somehow come to life even more live, He spoke of his love of Ireland and Galway especially as he had lived here for four months, 8 years ago working in the eircell shop selling phones. He commented how a lot has changed, no more snackbox on shop street much to the amusement of the crowd. The set drew mainly from his debut album, playing all but two. He played all of his new E.P. Blood bank except one and played a new song Brackett, WI which can be found on the charity record “Dark Was The Night”. He also included in his set a cover of the Yo La Tengo song "I Feel Like Going Home", which was sang by his bassist Matthew McCaughan. The night had many highlights which can be seen in video form below, all are mine except wolves, here are just some of the amazing bits: The complete hush from the crowd as he got straight into Flume, The outro to Creature fear was just incredible as the Drummer Sean Carey went to work on his drum kit.The crowd singing happy birthday to the Guitarist Mike Noyce for his 22nd bday. "For Emma" got the crowd going and was just perfect with the acoustics in the tent. The crowd in general were in fine voice and were the added backing vocalists to this great performance. The crowning moment though was “Wolves”, the crowd were asked to sing a line in the song and boy did they do it justice, the roof was nearly lifted, the gig finished and I walked to the roisin dubh with the hairs on the back of my neck in shock. Bon Iver Set List : Flume Lump Sum Creature Fear Brackett,WI Skinny Love Babys Blood Bank Re: Stacks I Feel Like Going Home - Yo La Tengo Cover For Emma, Forever Ago Encore : Beach Baby Wolves (Act I and II)
Download a bootleg made up of 6 youtube ripped mp3's here :


niamh said...

aw i was there. he was unreal. wud love to see him at a small gig thow cos you'd appreciate him even more!

wickedlittleowl said...

Found your blog through youtube and have to say, completely agree with everything you say here, it was such a gorgeous, emotionally charged gig. The chatterboxes needed a good kick up the arse but they could never take away the genuinely special nature of that gig. :) Also, thanks a million for the bootlegs and the videos, I only caught The Wolves with my cam and have been waiting for Flume to appear on youtube! :)

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable show,thanks so much for posting vids and bootlegs,great to relive it again,your blog is fantastic,ck out GAftv from the galway arts festival site for a recording of Skinny love from show.