Neko Case at the City Recital Hall

At the first of several ticketed events I’m attending for the Sydney Festival, last night I caught American songstress Neko Case at Sydney’s City Recital Hall.

It was my second time seeing Neko, and she and her band delivered much the same level of show as last time: a meditation on gentle humour, clear-voiced melodies, country roots musicianship, and poignant songwriting. She seemed plagued by a dodgy amp and an acoustically unresponsive Hall, but it still felt like a friend had come over to your house just to play a few of her (awesome) tunes. No shocks, and only a couple of boosts of adrenaline; last night was all about songcraft.

It’s also easy to see why Case is so often mistaken for a Canadian (she’s from Virginia). Not only does she frequently collaborate with Canuck band The New Pornographers, but her drummer and guitarist are both from the Great White North. She also had an EP called Canadian Amp (which contained covers of Canadian artists). One of the songs they played was  tune they co-wrote withThe Sadies, and one of their covers was by Sook-Yin Lee (“Knock Loud”, which was on Canadian Amp).

Neko plays the City Recital Hall again tonight (Tuesday 12-Jan-10).

Neko Case photo from Chad Wadsworth via Creative Commons license