Thursday, January 26, 2006

A night with Vetiver

Conspiracy. Scandal. Deceit. I think all of those words passed through the minds of those who attended Vetiver's set at the Echo on Monday night. Basically it wasn't what anyone expected.

Vetiver came on stage as any other band would. I was eager to see the indie god of fairy folk, Devendra Banhart, take his place at guitar and begin his warbling yoddle behind lead singer, Andy Cabic, but the moment never came. But how could this be? I thought to myself. He is in the band, isn't he?

Suddenly I began to look at the guitar player in a new light. Hidden under a brown beanie was a familiar smile wrapped in a warm, dark beard. He lingered in the background as if trying to hide his real identity but little by little it became apparent that our beloved Devendra was playing hide and seek with the audience.

He was playing guitar in a totally new fashion. When he sang, the reverb was turned up so high on his mic that all intonation of his usual larynx bending notes became impossible to distinguish. His shortly cropped hair peaking out from under his beanie distanced the crowd from any discernable assessment as to the guitarist's real identity. All I know is that if this wasn't Devendra than he looked a hell of a lot like him.

As Andy introduced the band he came to Devendra last and introduced him as Sanders Trippe. I looked at Nick and we both shrugged our shoulders silently trying to decipher who was who and if he was he, nearly missing the music we had come there to see.

As Andy announced the closing of the set Nick turned to me and whispered, 'its definately Devendra' and my opinion became set in stone. Just then a strange named soul was asked to join them on stage for the last two songs. Like a missing brother once thought lost at war, the real Devendra pranced onto the stage in all his happy pirate child attire. As the Devendra stunt double stood next to the real Mr. Banhart, my mind began to calculate faster than a Pentium chip after an Epi Pen injection and sent my synapse snaps into overdrive. So in other words I got mindskunked (for lack of a more appropriate expletive term - hey I got a little sister reading this).

The last two songs were pure joy and made the evening all that I had hoped it would be. The band played through "Los Pajores del Rio", a song cowritten by Andy and Devendra, and ended the night with a jam of "Crazy Love."

It was a perfect finish to an evening filled with mind boggles that I still believe to be conspiratory. But like I would really give up my pride over something like this.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

sanders trippe doesn't look anything like Devendra Banhart, write about the fucking music

5:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

amen to the above. and sanders sounds a hell of a lot better than devendra as well...spread some love to the man whose coattails you rode in on, devendra!!!!

4:30 PM  

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