field report no.030317

SUBJECT: Lage & Eldridge

For a show I very nearly passed up, this night ended up reaping huge benefits. I didn't necessarily know Julian Lage's work except by association—read: he plays with Nels Cline often enough—but I wanted to get out and see some music, and that seemed sufficient, so I sucked it up and made my way to the Grey Eagle.

It ended up that Chris Eldridge, half the duo I was there to see, fell ill. In light of that, they chose to do a truncated, all instrumental set (fine by me), but to make up for it, they called around to find a local act to open the show. Shane Parish was their auspicious choice.

To my ear, Parish entirely stole the show. Lage & Eldridge are phenomenal players, make no mistake, but the contrast was stark: it was feats of dexterity vs. feats of derring-do. As a pair, the duo could make finger-knotting flights glide by with ease. Lage and Eldridge were consistently upbeat and impressive but still repertory. Parish's set, by contrast was filled with brazen risks taken in the spur of the moment: wild dynamic shifts, strange tonal clusters and extended techniques not often heard at a 'folk' show.

I'm all the more pleased with the show since Shane Parish hails from my newly adopted home of Asheville, and is the first local act I've really connected with.

NOTES: Julian Lage; Chris Eldridge; Shane Parrish