Hamilton Leithauser Show Review

Author: Marko Uzeirovic

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Hamilton Leithauser returned to Madison last Friday night performing to a sold-out crowd at High Noon Saloon.

The crooner played many songs from his collaborative album with Rostam Batmanglij, I Had a Dream That You Were Mine, but also played songs from Black Hours like “Alexandra.” Leithauser’s strong vocals built the cornerstone of the performance as every note sounded just as it does on the record.  On tracks like “The Bride’s Dad” the audience witnessed Leithauser’s range beginning the song on a softer and cleaner tone only to build to raw and powerful vocals at the end.  From the Dylanesque “You Ain’t That Young Kid” to the doo-wop inspired “Rough Going (I Won’t Let Up),” Leithauser’s performance showcased his abilities in a diverse range of styles.

Leithauser’s opener, Lucy Dacus’s performance highlighted several tracks from her debut album No Burden.  Dacus’s greatest strength came from her ability to take the subtleties of her songs and allow them to build into intense soundscapes.  Something that Dacus did well on No Burden, and also shined throughout her live performance.  “I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore” did a great job of creating great intensity in a live setting.

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Leithauser and Dacus performing “1959”

To close the performance, Dacus joined Leithauser for an encore.  The two performed I Had a Dream That You Were Mine’s closer, “1959.”  Dacus performed Angel Deradoorian’s part, as the duo gave a dreamy ending to the night with Dacus repeatedly singing, “one day I’ll start to listen.  Each time Dacus became softer until she faded away, leaving me, and, presumably, many others with chills as post-concert reality began to set back in.