Jun 26, 2014
Courtney Barnett at Schubas on June 23, 2014
Courtney Barnett and her band put on a great show at Schubas on June 23rd – a freebie as she called it -- as tickets were free to those who could make it out on a night. Having heard Courtney’s Avant Gardener on XRT a few times and again, I was expecting a younger Lucinda Williams with an Aussie twist, but that assumption proved what we all know about assumptions, which is that they are often dead wrong. Instead her singer songwriter style balladry was put in the back seat for some post-punk, straight on rock ‘n roll, guitar rifts right on with her band. Even Avant Gardener came with a kick to it, kind of like swimming in Lake Michigan with a bit of an undertow keeping things on the edge. We were not in any old swimming pool.
The whole set, while reflecting the shorter list of songs available to a new artist, was ever so satisfying with enough meat on the bones to satisfy the packed room of freebiests. The most common comment overheard as we all trailed out was “That was cool!” and sure it was. Great strong music, complimented by fun banter by Courtney with the crowd, asking the bar to offer free beer to us all (but then you can’t get it all she said, making light of the free entry) and suggesting that one by one we should introduce ourselves to the band, yet acknowledging we may not have time for that. She also didn’t disappoint with an encore of just Courtney, with a singer songwriter style ballad. If nothing else, it convinced the friend who came with me that, yes, I wasn’t crazy suggesting that he should come out and see this new act that sounded like Lucinda. Scooping up one of her CDs with a smile, he didn’t seem to mind.
Looking forward to seeing her again on Day 1 of Lolla. She already introduced a new song to us at Schuba’s that sounded just right and I look forward to hearing more.
Post by guest blogger, K-Girl