Waxahatchee and Swearin’ are currently on a west coast tour that ends tomorrow in San Diego at the Che Cafe and last night they played a packed show in Eagle Rock put on by FYF. Although this isn’t the first time I’ve seen the Crutchfield sisters tour together with their respective projects this definitely was the bigger of the two shows, the previous show being held at a smaller DIY venue in Pomona as part of their summer tour last year. Since that tour both bands have gone on to each put out a sophomore record and receive a plethora of media attention. From NPR to Vice both Swearin’ and Waxahatchee have been talked about all across the internet this past year and with good reason. Both bands are simply incredible and last night was definitely a proper display as to why they have earned the buzz they have.
Opening up the night was the Los Angeles based Upset. I made it to the show a few minutes late but I was able to catch most of their set. I have to say not only was I really impressed but I am definitely a fan now after seeing them live. They put on a fun show and even played a cover of “Not Just Boys Fun” by 7 Seconds. I actually tried to pick up their record after the show but they could only take cash which is unfortunate but after talking to one of the members it looks like they’re investing in a square card reader for future shows. So next time I catch them at a show, which I know will be happening sometime in the near future, I’ll pick up the record. I’m a stickler for shipping otherwise I would just buy it online.
After Upset wrapped up their set Swearin’ took the stage and plowed through jam after jam. The vocals could have been turned up a bit as I had some trouble hearing them despite being rather close to the stage. Other than that their set went off without a hitch and the band put on a great show. At one point there was even drumstick on guitar action! Not that the act of running a drumstick across a guitar for a really cool sound is all that difficult to do, it’s not, I’ve just never seen it done live before. I’ve seen a lot of things in my 10 years going to shows but surprisingly not that. Swearin’ had great energy that night and gave off a pleasant vibe that had me shuffling a bit in my little pocket of the crowd. They closed out their set with their latest single “Dust in the Gold Sack” before leaving the stage.
Going into the show I knew that Waxahatchee would be playing a full band set but given that the two previous times I had seen them Katie had played acoustic I figured this would be an entirely new experience altogether. I have to say that I really enjoyed the performance as a full band more so than the acoustic sets I had seen previously. Not that I didn’t enjoy the acoustic performances, they were incredible to say the least, but with Cerulean Salt being a release that was recorded as a band I wanted to hear the songs as they were recorded. Before starting their set Katie gave us a heads up mentioning that she would be putting a tampon in her ear. I assume as an ear plug but I could very well be wrong about that. Regardless of the use I thought it was a bit funny she gave a disclaimer before playing. As Waxhatchee played the entire crowd looked up with awe as they were captivated by Katie’s voice and sheer emotion. I was a bit floored myself as I don’t think I’ve heard Katie’s voice sound this strong before and I’ve been seeing her perform since the days of P.S. Eliot. This may have easily been the best performance I’ve seen her give to date and I was glad to see that such a huge crowd had come out experience it. As the set ended the audience refused to leave demanding an encore without having to start the now cliche “one more song” chant that has become common place at most shows. The band obliged to the polite request and played another before making a final exit. Unfortunately as I headed to the merch table they were out of the new record but i was able to pick up a copy of the new Swearin’ LP, Surfing Strange, which you should all buy if you haven’t already! Overall the night was a success and I am glad I made the somewhat lengthy trek to Eagle Rock to catch the show.
If you live in California and want to catch this tour before it ends you can see them at the Che Cafe in La Jolla tomorrow.