Feb 26, 2007

Calexico @ The Basement

Calexico is named after a small town in southern California, but in my book the word translates to mean "Music with Heart and Soul". For that is what they provided Sunday night at The Basement. Last here in 2004, it was a pleasure to have them back. Their music is pulled from so many different styles and genres it is nearly impossible to pin them down. Suffice to say they swing from thumping rock songs to desert tinged ballads to mariachi swing to heart felt folk, all the while keeping the audience thoroughly entertained. They opened quietly with "Convict Pool" before playing a lovely instrumental which led into "Yours And Mine". By "Across The Wire" the band was in full swing and really providing an atmosphere of perhaps being in their hometown of Tucson, Arizona. Then they played my favourite song "Sunken Waltz" and I was feeling very satisfied. The show was then driven by their excellent musicianship. Joey Burns is a charismatic singer who keeps the band heading in the right direction. Paul Niehaus, Martin Wenk, John Convertino and Volker Zander are all accomplished musicians who don't miss a beat on a variety of instruments, drums, guitar, pedal steel, vibraphone, accordion, standup bass and trumpet. Ah, the trumpet, the highlight of the night. Martin Wenk and Jacob Valenzuela were outstanding, their beautiful sounds adding that extra special edge to every song they were used on. A bunch of songs then flowed, "Not Even Stevie Nicks...", "Guero Canelo", "Letter To Bowie Knife", "Bisbee Blue" and a few others I didn't catch the name of (didn't complete a set list this time). Just a great night of excellent music, its a pity the venue still stops you from standing up close and personal with the band, I honestly believe that would provide for an even better atmosphere.

MP3: Across The Wire

SET LIST UPDATE: Thanks to Jessie, I found a set list here...
Convict Pool
Yours and Mine
Across the Wire
Sunken Waltz
Deep Down
Ballad of Cable Hogue
Prison on Rt 41
Sonic Wind
Not even Stevie Nicks…
Minas de Cobre
Letter to Bowie Knife
Ojitos Traidores
Guero Canelo

Bisbee Blue
Alone Again Or

The support act Whitley, from Melbourne, was excellent. From what I understand the project was originally Lawrence Greenwood, but it now constitutes a full five piece band, playing a blend of country and rock. The singer's voice was very soulful and projected very well, although unfortunately not everyone was listening. Those that were, heard the sounds of I believe a very promising Australian act. I bought their EP "Lost in Time" and it is well worth your time tracking down a copy from Casadeldisco Records.
Whitley Myspace


  • At February 26, 2007 , Blogger Jessie said...

    Setlists are usually posted here, but I don't see one for your show.

  • At February 26, 2007 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    People who talk through support acts suck for all times. I think it's another reason the venue feels a bit weird - you get the feeling maybe half the audience is there for a purpose other than the music.

    It was an amazing musical experience though. I was really unprepared for how great they are live. I've been listening to Garden Ruin again tonight and even though I still like Feast Of Wire better as an album, I have whole new ears for this stuff now.


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