Multi-instrumentalist Andrew Bird‘s music is so layered and lushly arranged that it’d be difficult to imagine his live renditions accurately representing his studio creations. But Bird makes excellent use of a looping pedal, looping simple violin and guitar parts on top of each other to build a base over which he whistles and plays soaring violin parts, revealing that much of his recordings were made entirely by the man himself. Backed on fuller, folksier songs by his band, The Hands of Glory, the Andrew Bird live show is at once both a fun, whiskey-fueled midwestern folk show and exhibition in virtuoso violin technique.
Bird has released four live albums (the Fingerlings series) that speak for themselves, but Monday at the Masonic, he’ll have fifteen years worth of recordings to draw from as well as the eleven tracks on his most recent LP, Are You Serious, released in April. Bird is also well-known to cover traditional folk songs, and in 2014 released an album consisting entirely of covers by the longtime Illinois folk duo The Handsome Family. In larger, more acoustically cavernous settings, Bird’s violins can resonate most fully, and Monday’s show promises to be another in his canon of great live performances.
Article by HR Huber-Rodriguez