May 21st, 2008 - Bowery Ballroom, NY - Wild Sweet Orange
Review and Images by Dominick Mastrangelo
It's easy to think that Wild Sweet Orange have been around for a lot longer than they have. Ever since I heard "Ten Dead Dogs" nearly two years ago on KEXP, this Birmingham, AL band has floated around my various iTunes playlists and in my musical subconscious. With the full-length We Have Cause To Be Uneasy set for a July release and 2007's The Whale EP under their belts WSO are go for launch as it were.
And perhaps with an eye toward the future, Preston Lovinggood and Co. got the one song they are best know for, the aforementioned "Ten Dead Dogs," out of the way first. The sleepy rocker with Lovinggood's dripping delivery and dreamy guitars that occasionally begged and inched to a more rock sound only to be restrained, was every bit as good as it's sounded on the radio and mp3 player the past two years.
The guitars were then let loose for the rest of the concert with songs like "Wrestle With God" (mp3) launching a vicious Old 97's-like drum/guitar assault. Lovinggood grabbing the mic and leaning in a little singing "Sometimes at night on dark highways, I pull the car over and listen for trains" as drummer Chip Kilpatrick rapped a quick beat on the edge of his tom. The guitar work of Taylor Shaw was truly inspired and the bass playing from Garrett Kelly, his hair flopping around, was Hammond-esque.
Lovinggood thought it made sense to bring out opener David Ford to play harmonica on one song saying, "He's from the south of England... and we're from the south of this country."
The beautiful and epic "Land of No Return" and the equally affecting "I'm Coming Home" both built up slowly with drums layered on to guitars and Lovinggood repeating "And I know, I know, I know, I know I'm coming home" as the guitar mimicked his voice and the song pushed along to the end of the set.
Remaining Tour Dates:
May 27 City Hall Nashville, TN
May 28 Variety Playhouse Atlanta, GA
May 30 Culture Room Ft. Lauderdale, FL
June 3 Meridien Houston, TX
June 4 Antone’s Austin, TX
June 5 House Of Blues Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX
June 6 House Of Blues New Orleans, LA
June 7 Brickhouse Theater Phoenix, AZ
June 9 Troubador Los Angeles, CA
June 10 Troubador Los Angeles, CA
June 11 Troubador Los Angeles, CA
June 12 House Of Blues San Diego, CA
June 13 Fillmore Theatre San Francisco, CA
June 15 House Of Blues Anaheim, CA
For more images from this show and all of the shows covered by Dominick visit his flickr page.