Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Concert Review :: Ben Kweller - The Paradise, Boston, MA, October 16th, 2008

Boston means a lot to Ben Kweller. It’s the place where he met his wife and he paid it tribute last night during his show at the Paradise. At the end of “Things I Like to Do,” Kweller substituted the nightclub’s name for the lyrics ‘noisy bar.’

Aussie Lawrence Greenwood of Whitley opened the show with just an acoustic guitar, a mellow voice and large, round, black glasses.

The set started with Kweller’s catchiest tunes like “Fight.” The whole band got into it, Kweller on his acoustic, backed by a bass, lap steel and drums. He dedicated “Family Tree” to his wife and baby boy who were in the balcony. His son was standing on the railing in his mother’s arms wearing a giant pair of earmuffs.

Kweller played a few new songs from the forthcoming Changing Horses, out in January 2009. One of them was “Sawdust Man,” a jumpy tune which Kweller played piano for and another band member sat Kweller’s acoustic guitar in his lap and played it with a slide piece like a lap steel.

Towards the end of the show Kweller played some crowd pleasers, everyone singing along to “I’ll kill you with karate I learned in Japan.” He created a large gathering that night, the club full of everyone from college students to middle-aged bar hoppers.

Kweller returns to Mass with Conor Oberst in November at the Academy of Music in Northampton.


~Lee Stepien

Posted at WERS.org on October 17, 2008
Photography by A. Grant

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