Jenny Lewis, Whispertown2000, and Jonathan Wilson
September 18, 2008
The Granada, Lawrence, Kansas
By NICOLE REINERTSON
Last night in Lawrence, Jenny Lewis and friends made sweet rock-n-roll love so hard that I’m still walking funny this morning. Lewis, best known as lead singer of Rilo Kiley and lesser-known as a backup singer for The Postal Service, showed the Granada solo side. Lewis is touring in support of her new album, Acid Tongue, due out next Tuesday.
Jonathan Wilson began the evening before a relatively empty bar. I don’t know if it was the music or the fact that everyone (even the fatties) were shivering from the blasting air conditioning, but a small group of us made our way to the stage, where we swayed to Wilson’s throwback guitar riffs.
Whispertown2000, from Los Angeles, probably not used to the Kansas fresh air, claimed to be hopped up on Claritin-D. Acetaminophen disclaimer and all: this band rocked the shit out of the Granada. Everyone seemed to wake up. Band members from Wilson’s and Lewis’ bands joined the stage.
The rest of Jenny Lewis’ band mates strolled onto the stage after I watched the girls in the front row try to steal the set lists BEFORE THE SHOW EVEN STARTED. Two suggestions: First, don’t touch the shit on stage. It’s not yours and your dress is ugly. Second, why do you want to look at the set list BEFORE the show? Don’t you know anything about rock-n-roll, dumbass? Moving on, I should note that guitarist Johnathan Rice, famous in his own right for his role as Roy Orbison in Walk the Line as well as for having four solo albums out, joined drummer Barbara Gruska in backing up all three of the night's bands.
Miss Lewis (as Rice referred to her several times backstage, funny since the two are allegedly dating) quietly took her seat at a piano and opened with "Jack Kills Mom" then "Pretty Bird," two tracks from Acid Tongue. The only dialogue for the entire show came from Lewis dedicating "Rise Up With Fists!!," from her first album, Rabbit Fur Coat, saying, “This song is for….Sarah Palin.” Lyrics include: It’s hard to believe your prophets/When they’re asking you to change things/But with their suspect lives we look the other way.
I think I know who Lewis will be voting for.
Between playing the piano and guitar and dancing and singing, Lewis took up a lot of the stage. During "Acid Tongue" and other slower songs from the new album, Lewis and the screaming bartender in the back were the only two people in the room making noise. The audience was completely enraptured by her presence (minus the bartender). Lewis just smiles while singing expecting as much from the bar scene.
Backstage, Lewis and her band, relaxed on a couch and drank Tecate. I told them I was going to be reviewing the show and asked if anyone had anything they wanted to comment on. Johnathan Rice looked at everyone then at the stage and replied, “Uh…I think we said everything we needed to up there.” Indeed.
Jack Kills Mom
The Charging Sky
Rise Up With Fists!!
Bad Man’s World
You Are What You Love
Melt Your Heart
Sing A Song For Them
Personal Bias: I have been listening to Jenny Lewis (in one form or another) for over 5 years. Plus, she’s so hot.
Random Detail: Jenny really IS as sweet and genuine as she seems, Johnathan Rice even more so.
By The Way: Fuck you, girl with the terrible backpack and hair worse than mine. Relax and have fun, have a beer, chill bro.