The previous night, Wye Oak did a set at the Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever. Jill of all trades Jenn Wasner made it clear to the crowd early on that if you missed out on that night’s show, you were getting the full experience Thursday.
“We’re playing the exact same thing so if you had some FOMO, don’t sweat it – you’re good,” Wasner said of the band’s second straight night in LA.
In recent interviews, Wasner indicated she was kind of over playing guitar as much, and that was made clear by the amount of songs she played bass and keyboards in alternative to the six-string.
Wye Oak’s most recent album, the critically-acclaimed Shriek, was more electronically themed than previous albums. A majority of the set was picked from that recent album, although a handful of songs from Civilian and an oldtime favorite “That I Do” from 2009’s The Knot.
Wasner’s comedic timing between songs was well-received by an enthusiastic crowd. Wasner and drummer Andy Stack got large ovations after seemingly every song, prompting Wasner to thank the crowd at every turn.
“Some people say that LA crowds can be cold and harsh, but you guys kick ass,” Wasner said. “Those people are stupid.”
Stack pointed out how Wasner basically called LA people assholes, to which Wasner said she meant it as a compliment, and the Club Bahia crowd definitely took it as one.
Wye Oak’s best instrument is Wasner’s vocals, which was on full display on the night. They’re as haunting as they are beautiful.
At one point during the evening, Wasner wanted to make a shoutout to some fans in the crowd, but forgot their names. Luckily bandmate Stack had them written on his hand. Wasner went on to tell the story how this couple had their first date at their El Rey show last year and they were celebrating an engagement – proof that there’s hope when it comes to live music and romance.
“I hope it lasts longer than ours did,” Wasner joked to the crowd, making it a little bit awkward as she was referencing a failed relationship with her bandmate. The crowd laughed along sheepishly.
Wasner precluded “Logic of Color” by saying it is one of her favorite songs to sing and she wanted to enjoy every moment of it, knowing it would be the last time she’d get to sing it live for a little bit. The one song she didn’t play an instrument on, Wasner crushed it as Stack’s drums laid the foundation.
A few songs later, Wye Oak closed with their hit “Civilian,” the opposite of a love song. In fact, it’s about a relationship unraveling, and Wasner’s vocals on the track add an extra layer of heartbreak.
Wasner made note that this was going to be the duo’s last show for awhile as they’re between albums at the moment. Wasner has her solo side-project Flock of Dimes, which she toured as in support of Sylvan Esso earlier this year. Though she made clear there’s still more to come from Wye Oak in the future, Thursday night was the last taste of it fans were going to get in a live setting for awhile. For that, the crowd savored every moment just that much more.
Opening up for Wye Oka were Lake. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to catch their set but our photographer, Steven go some great photos of them. Check out their music here.
Words: Mark E. Ortega
Photography: Steven Ward
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