There’s something about the first and last shows of a tour. There’s added magic and a polished celebration of a tour. Last night Lissie proved this sentiment at First Avenue on the last date of a long tour. The Iowa-based artist brought along a cast of Minneapolis musicians for a longer set and something extra special.
Canadian singer-songwriter Cat Clyde opened the evening with a soulful blues, folk-tinged set. The Patsy Cline and Bobbie Gentry influenced songwriter delivered expressive moments from belting out lyrics to energizing the audience with strong grizzled lyrics.
“All the Black” was a prime showcase of Cat’s range, dipping down into the snarl and warmth, while remaining silky smooth in the delivery. Her music translated well to the audience, garnering bouts of cheers and adoration. Her fresher song “Eternity” is a hint at the progression and bigger things ahead for this promising artist. Hopefully Minneapolis remains on her future tour schedules.
Lissie’s newest release Carving Canyons is a treasure trove of emotions ranging from sassy anger, to acceptance, to identifying lessons with a loss. The album feels like a callback to many of the traits that ignited Lissie on her blossoming career. Yes, there were many of the 5 trademarks from a Lissie show in place (sans barefeet), this time there was a greater comfort and fluidness in the set list.
Her newer songs “Flowers”, “Lonesome Wine”, and “Night Moves” stand toe-to-toe with her early favorites. Although the tropical vibe “Chasing the Sun” leans more towards a Sheryl Crow throwback, it’s a welcomed addition that still feels like a core Lissie standard.
For those long-term fans, the evening disappoint with “Best Days”, “Don’t You Give Up On Me”, and “Oh Mississippi”. Her vocals on “When I’m Alone” felt just as strong as they are on the 2010 release of the track. But standout “In Sleep” had an expanded indulgence with guitarist Peter Sieve shredding to a strobe light induced jam that riled up the crowd.
Another shining moment came from the performance of “Sad”, a new song written during a ‘full sass’ moment by Lissie. The chorus hits straight on to brutal petty honestly that we’ve all whispered under our breaths during a breakup. It’s a beautiful authentic song that hit sweetly inside First Avenue.
“And when you hear this songI want you to be sad Like when you dropped that bomb Want it to feel like that I don’t care, I hope you hate me Go tell all your friends I’m crazy ‘Cause you don’t like when I get angry And hold a mirror for you, baby Hope you feel sad, hope you feel bad”
Keyboardist Kate Saoirse, drummer Luke Anderson, bassist Megan Mahoney, and guitarist Peter Sieve supported seamlessly the deep catalog of Lissie songs, bringing each to life and giving them a cohesive breath. As a hometown crowd, it’s also a proud moment to see our local musicians excel at the legendary venue.
After the traditional encore ending with the almost retired cover “Pursuit of Happiness” (Kid Cudi), Lissie paused and shared that this was typically the end of the night. Putting down her guitar and undoing the microphone, Lissie then played “Little Lovin” that lead her down among the front row. It was a special moment that shows that a little extra lovin’ goes a long way.