When asked about my favorite concert memories, DeVotchKa’s 2016 show at First Avenue will always be mentioned. Not only for their great set, but also for the 3 arealists that spun over the crowd during the encore. I was the exclamation mark on a perfect Valentine’s Day show. Clearly I was looking forward to the band’s return.
The evening started with Minneapolis’ Keep for Cheap. The 5 piece band delivered a lively set to the steadily growing crowd. They released their debut album “Bundle” this summer. Thais was their first time on First Avenue’s main stage and whatever cool they were trying to keep was lost in the huge smiles on their faces. Being on the historic stage is a rite of passage for most Minnesota musicians.
From the first bars of “The Alley” Devotchka’s larger than life sound filled First Avenue, grabbed the audience and would not release us until they were good and done. From their walk on music – Vangelis’ Blade Runner to the dazzling array of instruments used during the set everything had a very cinematic vibe. Nick Urata joked the show was worth the 2 ½ year wait and I fully agree. There are layers within layers to Devotchka and they create their own universe that fans got to be part of for a little bit.
Set List: Alley / Let Me Sleep / Honcho / Queen / Sand/Sea / 100 Lovers / Contrabanda / Break Up Song / Straight Shot / Clockwise / Love My Way / Enemy Guns
Encore: How It Ends / Ranchero