There was a hush over the crowd last Wednesday night as Sharon Van Etten walked onto Phoenix’s Rhythm Room stage.
This East Coast indie-rock queen immediately refocused the audience’s attention from its chatter and mingling, to her raw talent and addictive energy.
Van Etten sent chills down the spines of middle-aged hipsters (the audience majority) with her intimate songs exploring her life experiences, as she started the show solo and strong with “Give Out.”
Between her witty comments and edgy puns, Van Etten had everyone wrapped around her finger, full of the most dazzling personality.
Van Etten’s voice was full of command and clarity while drummer Ben Lord acted as the heartbeat of her creativity coming to life. Bass player Doug Keith tied it all together with simple, catchy riffs that added to the already magical groove.
For a three-piece band, they sounded full and complete.
Songs like “Don’t Do It” and “One Day” were crowd favorites that really got the audience’s feet tapping and heads nodding.
Although the set could have been longer, the band still managed to play a balanced span of new and old music.
One of the most intriguing aspects of the night was how much attention she paid to her audience. Van Etten made sure they were engaged and hearing what they wanted.
When she came out for her encore, she played a tear-jerking version of “Damn Right,” followed by the whimsical “Love More,” leaving the audience wanting to do just that: love Sharon Van Etten even more.
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