Saturday, November 10, 2007

Jens Lekman at Webster Hall / Music Hall of Williamsburg - Oct 27/28, 2007

Sipping on the Sweet Nectar

It's been two weeks since I went to see The Go! Team and fall in love with Jens Lekman. I went to the city to see The Go! Team after having dinner with some friends, but things didn't happen as planned. My friends wanted to go to the Blue Man Show, which I couldn't afford because it was 80 bucks, and meanwhile I decided to check out a guy called Jens Lekman who was going to play Webster Hall for only 20. In fact, I ended up getting in for free and being blown away by Lekman's charisma , music and voice.

Jens took the stage with a six girl band and one DJ all dressed in white with Jens looking particularly like a chef about to season our hearts. He plays guitar and sings with a very romantic baritone, the girls play different instruments, including saxo, accordion, trumpet, violins and drums, and the DJ is there to sample live all those samples Jens has included in his recordings. I didn't know his music much, except a couple of songs from his new album, but I felt like I had heard his music all my life before. I don't mean that like some people accuse him, of being just a guy ripping off people's stuff, but I do mean it in the sense that it was so comfortable listening to him that it felt like his music had been with me all the time and I instantaneously wanted to enjoy it. Now, I can't stop listening to his excellent new album Night Falls Over Kortedala and his very good compilation of EPs called Oh You're So Silent Jens.

In fact, I liked him so much that when I got home and started listening to the album I bought, I found out he was playing again the next day at the Music Hall of Williamsburg as a solo show. A funny guy, with music that makes me feel warm in these soon to be very cold nights? Of course I had to see him again.

His cool personality was on hand again in Brooklyn for a crowd that had to be full of good fans, as I noticed how everybody knew all his songs in detail. They were pretty much filling in his songs the sampled chorus he didn't completely have that night. He almost played solo, except for some help from his drummer playing the bongos, some backing vocals coming from an iPod, and a loop pedal he admitted not to be an Andrew Bird kind of expert with it. If he was awesome at Webster Hall, he was even awesomer at Music Hall. Jens played more songs, took requests from the public, played a couple of covers including You Can Call Me Al by Paul Simon, and was as hilarious as I expected him to be, again.

My favorite song of the whole weekend was A Postcard to Nina (with Pocketful of Money very very close), which is on Night Falls Over Kortedala. Jens introduces that song so well live that every time I listen to it on my CD player, without the intro, I wish I could hear him again talking about him visiting Germany, going to an awkward dinner and feeling his dad's friend's drunk breath way too close. It would have been your favorite song I am sure. But my favorite moment of the weekend didn't happen at Webster Hall, nor at Music Hall. It happened on the roof of 151 Kent Avenue, Brooklyn NY, an address I will hardly forget. After Jens finished his set the second time I saw him during the weekend, he went over to a fan's building to play some more songs while over viewing the city. I didn't really appreciate I had a great view from this guy's roof, because who would be looking at something different from Jens?, but I did enjoy his voice and company while eating some pizza and having some beers his fans kindly brought to share with everybody else. Oh man, it would have been your favorite moment of the weekend I am sure too.

Jens opens his mouth, says whatever, or even just without saying anything but smiling, and everybody follows laughing/smiling. That's how a Jens Lekman's show is. Awesome! I am sure because of him there were new couples in town those nights, new friends (I made one), and lots of people went home with a smile of their own to dream.

So yeah, that was it. I had an unforgettable weekend with Jens Lekman. How was yours? [photos of the show @ Webster Hall][photos of the show @ Music Hall of Williamsburg]


Were you at the show? How did you like it?

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