Jakob Dylan w/ Neko Case
Pabst Theater Milwaukee, WI
April 28, 2010
Story by Andrea Jenels Photos by Lynn Allen
Touring with his band Three Legs and special guest Neko Case on backing vocals, Jakob Dylan brought his new country-esque brand of folk to Milwaukee's Pabst Theatre Wednesday night. Playing songs mostly from his latest release, Women + Country and 2008's Seeing Things, the evening proved to be as melancholy as the slow moving transition from one depressing song to the next. For most Pop-Rock artists the transition into country means a chance to explore upbeat, foot-stompin choruses, with only the occasional ballad pressing of heartbreak and despair. Even with Three Legs consisting of an upright bass, mandolin, and guest fiddler, the evening focused more on the pedal-steel guitar, with it's beautiful yet heavyhearted resonance back-dropping the songs.
Whispery backing vocals were sung by special guests Neko Case and her own full-time backing vocalist, Kelly Hogan. Both are featured on 2010's Women + Country. Case being a prominent Indie artist herself, it was at times uncomfortable to see such a vivacious singer/songwriter used only as a backdrop to the theme of the rather bleak evening.
Although the night was well received by the crowd, at times it seemed as if they were vehemently awaiting the conversion to a more lively performance. Even through the encore Jakob Dylan remained lack-love and somber resulting in a less than stellar performance.