Members of the band Blind Pilot, who played the Fox Theater Monday. (Photo courtesy Blind Pilot)
An American indie folk band from Portland may still be recovering from the altitude after playing at over a mile high.
Blind Pilot was featured at Boulder’s own Fox Theatre on Monday. The group has found commercial success with their singles, “Go On, Say It” and “3 Rounds and a Sound,” which was featured on Showtime’s popular series, “Californication.”
These songs are featured on their album titled, “3 Rounds and a Sound,” which was released in June 2009. The band is fronted by Israel Nebeker, whose quiet, intimate voice delivers beautiful heartfelt and melancholic lyrics.
As the band appeared on stage, a plethora of instruments caught the audience’s eyes. The average and expected instruments were lined up: two acoustic guitars, keyboard and drums. Then, there were unusual instruments, such as a standing accordion, standing bass, dulcimer, xylophone, ukulele, trumpet and banjo. That is a lot of instruments for only six members in the band.
The female back-up vocalist wowed the audience by switching between the ukulele, banjo and dulcimer. The sound that Blind Pilot was able to craft was unexpected: seeing Blind Pilot live was like hearing them for the first time. Each instrument was uniquely highlighted in each song, differing from the album. The focus was not just on the majestic lyrics, but on the melodies and beautiful sound.
The intimate setting of The Fox was the perfect venue for Blind Pilot. As they opened with “Paint or Pollen,” transitioning into “Two Towns Away From Me,” the audience was swaying and singing along the lyrics with Nebeker.
Although there was a mix-up when they were going to play their third song, “The Story I Heard,” Nebeker jokingly told the audience, “I have to take full responsibility for that one.” The audience dismissed the mistake with laughter. That little mistake just made it that more endearing.
Blind Pilot played nearly the entirety of their album, “3 Rounds and a Sound,” but also managed to sneak a new song onto the set list. The song had the typical folky style of Blind Pilot, but was slightly more upbeat. Fans should stay tuned for the looming new Blind Pilot album , which will hopefully come out soon.
In between songs, the audience was quiet due to the intense focus and attention in anticipation of the next song. The back-up female vocalist/banjo/dulcimer/ukulele player said, “You guys are so quiet. It’s really nice, but so intense.”
Nearing the end of the concert, Blind Pilot performed, “Go On, Say It,” with each member displaying a giant smile and the majority of the audience singing along, dancing and even tearing up a little. “Go On,Say It,” was definitely a crowd pleaser, as well as the romantic, yet melancholic “3 Rounds and a Sound.”
The band ended with “One Red Thread,” however, they came back for the encore.
They played a lovely rendition and cover of Gillian Welch’s “Little Miss Ohio.” The audience joined in singing lyrics, “I want to do right, but not right now.”
The last song they played during the encore was the jovial song, “We Are The Tide.” The female back-up vocalist and xylophonist joined on drums with the drummer. The opening band, Corey Chisel, jumped on stage with a tambourine, and the whole audience jumped and danced around.
Blind Pilot put on a truly impressive show filled with emotion and intimacy mixed with upbeat melodies. The experience differed completely from that of just listening to the recorded album. Fans should be excited for what this band will do in the future.
Contact Staff Writer Emily Cavanagh at Emily.email@example.com.
- Local sound around Boulder: Paper Bird
- MSTRKRFT: mixing it up in Boulder
- Every Avenue offers fresh music
- Motet 'thrills' Boulder
- Uproot takes Boulder by storm