On my way into the Murder By Death/Laura Stevenson show at The Grey Eagle in Asheville a number of weeks ago, I chatted with a guy from Knoxville who had seen MBD the night before in Nashville. I had of course driven up to Asheville that afternoon from down here in Savannah, about 300 miles away.
But what’s a few hours and a few hundred miles when Murder By Death is somewhere vaguely nearby?
As they’ve been doing routinely, Murder By Death played songs from albums spanning their career — these are dream sets for their longtime fans — and displayed their usual command of the stage. It’s hard to know what to say about a band that makes excellence so routine. I’ve run out of superlatives.
I’ve loosely followed Laura Stevenson’s diverse, eclectic career for a long time, and I was thrilled to see her live for the first time. So it was a super night of music.
The Grey Eagle is an impressive venue — excellent sound, nice size, good flow, a pleasant outdoor area, quick bar service, an inviting food menu. The slightly yellow and purple lighting wasn’t especially interesting visually, so I desaturated some of them. I’ll also note that Stevenson hit the stage not long after the scheduled 9 p.m. start time, and MBD wrapped up their lengthy set before 11:30 — in Savannah, the headliner often wouldn’t be on stage at 11:30. It can be done: advertise the real show time, stick to the schedule, and the audience will get there!
Also, Asheville. Why don’t I go up there more often? I have a friend/relative who has a great house and amazing dog, and the city has some rich offerings. Before the MBD show, I caught a special screening at the Fine Arts Theatre of the compelling documentary Last Men Standing, about long-term AIDS survivors in San Francisco.
A few photos here, with more after the jump: