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Review Sat Apr 26 2014
One might be more familiar with Sean Carey's work with others bands, specifically as the drummer and supporting vocalist of Bon Iver. It can be hard to look past the massive nature of that band to see Carey's amazing work, but after the release of All We Grow, it became a little easier to envision Carey as a fantastic solo artist. His sound similar to that Bon Iver, but likens itself to even softer and more ambient textures, making his sound a perfect fit with Lincoln Hall.
Opening the night was White Hinterland. I've been a fan of White Hinterland since her debut under her own name Casey Dienel. ". Dienel's sound has change substantially since the opening notes of Wind-Up Canary. What was once a delicate piano behind a wonderful voice has transformed into the current White Hinterland, more intricate instrumentation fronted by a more complex and experimental voice. Playing by herself, Dienel used a variety of loops and pedal to create lovely and powerful songs such as "David" and "Baby". Dienel connected with the crowd with her funny patter, ranging from Seth Rogan induced sex dreams to an unyielding hope to attain Hannibal Buress' phone number. Her candor and delicate attitude made it a pleasure to follow her lead and sing along during a couple of songs, including "Ring the Bell". While the was was tentativeness from the crowd, they eventually gave in during her final song. Dienel left the stage through the crowd as they soft sang along with her, giving her as much love as she gave them.
Before S. Carey came to the stage, the hauntingly beautiful theme to Twin Peaks blasted through the speakers at Lincoln Hall. At first it seemed like part of the house music, but it quickly became apparent that it was meant to set the tone for the set. The tattered and soot smudged drapes that made up the stage surroundings held an antique quality to them, which was then contrasted by the digital landscapes that were eventually projected onto them as S. Carey made their way to the stage.
Carey was accompanied by a full band, which captured his soft and ambient songs wonderfully. It gave Carey the opportunity to focus on playing keyboards and his whispering his exquisite lyrics. "Mothers" plays sadder and more heartrending live as Carey's voice tenderly drifts through the venue. The setlist stayed true to the sound of his albums with only a few slight departures from the calmer notions that S. Carey resides in. One of these departures occurred right in the middle of the set the band momentarily emerged as a post rock unit, drowning Lincoln Hall in heavy droning guitar and even denser drums. It was one of the few times Carey backed away from his keys and played on the secondary drum kit next him.
The videos projected on stage flowed with the music, combing through Terence Malick-esque scenery before reaching a heated apex during "Fire-Scene" as the dirty torn sheets were filled with a billowing flame. Dienel joined S. Carey for an incredible cover of Bjork's "Unravel" before the quick encore which saw Carey playing the main drums during "Neverending Fountain". The crowd definitely wanted to see more of S. Carey and White Hinterland. Both sets lasted around a hour, much to short for the caliber of these incredibly talented musicians. However, the final two songs certainly made for a great end to the short, but fulfilling night.