Waxahatchee Mesmerizes The Palace Theatre Friday Night


photos by Vito Ingerto
The temperature went south here in the twin cities this week, and Friday night at the Palace Theatre the music took a turn to the south when Katie Crutchfield brought her latest rendition of Waxahatchee to town. They are out supporting the recently released and critically acclaimed Tigers Blood.

Good Morning opened the show Friday night. The Australian band rocked way above their weight class. The set ran the spectrum from straight up garage rock to collage radio/indie leanings. The six piece band had the packed house rapt for almost an hour.

Waxahatchee took the stage right around 9:15. The band used Cheap Trick’s ” Southern Girls” as their walk on music. The set opened with “3 Sisters”. The tune started out slow, but took off once Katie threw her KC hat into the audience. Right away we get an intimate look at the relationships at play between siblings, and Katie being one of 3 sisters, we can only assume that the lyrics relate to that dynamic. “Evil Spawn” was the next up and the live version seemed even more countrified than the release. The harmonies of the chorus reverberated through the packed Palace. Katie’s poetic lyrical mastery, with it’s less is more phrasing, was definitely highlighted with a rocking rendition of “Ice Cold”. After these first three tunes from Tigers Blood, the band veered off into Plains territory with “Problem With It”. The candor, confidence and spirit of being in a relationship which you are unsure of the direction it is taking is something most of us can relate with. The band followed up with a couple from Saint Cloud, which would be the one in Florida and not Minnesota unfortunately. “The Eye” had a folky Bob Dylan quality to it. There seems to be some soul searching going on in “Hell”, and the live version Friday night seemed to have some Lucinda Williams DNA.

The set took a turn back to Tigers Blood with the tune I keep going back to over and over, “Right Back To It”. Definitely the highlight of the set for me, the harmonies were other worldly. This song just evokes so many emotions I’m far from articulate enough to describe. Check out the video if you really want to push yourself over the emotional edge. The band consisted of  Eliana Athayde, Colin Croom, Clay Frankel, Cole Berggren and Spencer Tweedy. Yup, Jeff Tweedy’s son was banging the skins on Friday night. After another intimate look into a relationship with “Burns Out At Midnight”, the band hit the Palace with another banger, “Bored”. No blind squirl finding a nut here, Katie has decoded the mysteries of magical song writing. Like a smoldering white hot poker, “Lone Star Lake” pierced through any vail of pretense, and illuminated the poet laureate that is Katie Cruthfield. I believe they played all 12 tracks off of Tigers Blood on Friday night, but will have to confirm to be sure. Crutchfield appeared to be having a ball on stage Friday night, and that energy was reciprocated by the sold out crowd. The second night of the tour was definitely a resounding success.