Damien Jurado and the Heavy Light Bring Heavy Songs to the Parish: Live Review

Damien_Jurado_052316-1I’ve known Damien Jurado’s live shows to be quiet, intimate, and transfixing solo performances. I’ve seen him play deep in the woods of Washington State and to a crowded bar in downtown Austin to silent, attentive crowds on both occasions. Despite the fact that Jurado’s three most recent efforts have boasted lush, cacophonous arrangements and atmospheric production, last week was the first time I’ve seen Jurado perform with a full band.

Damien_Jurado_052316-13While Jurado did forsake some of the enrapt attentiveness he’s commanded in past performances, his band proved impeccable, delivering cuts culled mostly from Jurado’s recent albums, including “Silver Timothy” from Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son and “QACHINA” and “Exit 353” from his most recent effort, Visions of Us on the Land. Later in the evening, free of the burden of being the only musician onstage, Jurado let his band play on as he climbed onto a chair while shaking maracas and acting as the centerpiece of a picturesque tableau. Jurado played a few songs solo near the end of the set, quickly capturing the same reverent quietude that has defined the previous performances I’ve seen.

Damien_Jurado_052316-5Ultimately, Jurado’s show at the Parish provided a great opportunity to see an outstanding songwriter recreate elaborate recordings in a live setting. Jurado has certainly amassed a loyal following of fans and garners consistent praise, but I’m still surprised that his fandom and praise aren’t more widespread. Fans of Bill Callahan, Sufjan Stevens, or Jason Molina should take note. Peruse our photographs of the show below.

All photographs © Bryan C. Parker & Pop Press International. Click any image to open the set in slideshow viewer.

About author
Bryan Parker is a writer and photographer living and working in Austin, TX. He is the founder of blog Pop Press International and print journal True Sincerity and recently released his first book, a volume on Beat Happening in the 33 1/3 series.

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