Don Bauder 8:30 a.m., Feb. 16
Blitzen Trapper vs. Dawes
When two throwback acts such as Blitzen Trapper and Dawes split a bill at Belly Up, everyone who missed being a teen in the ’70s gets a little Almost Famous for a night.
Of course, no one in 1974 would have spent half of Blitzen Trapper's set trying to figure out who singer/guitarist Eric Earley looked like before it finally hit them that he is a spitting image of Bored to Death star Jason Schwartzman. Similar to his bandmates, Earley spent much of this show juggling instruments. Within the confines of one song he might switch between keys, an electric guitar, and perhaps an acoustic. And you really know a band is multitasking when you catch a bass player pulling double-duty with a harmonica. The instrument-switching was especially evident, and quite impressive, during the multipart epic "Destroyer of the Void." Earley could entertain an audience solo any night of the week, but he seems to realize he has a band that is far too talented to waste.
Dawes is a different beast, leaning more toward the Laurel Canyon/Jackson Browne side of the ’70s. The group is impressive live, especially since it is four-piece that features only a single guitarist without sounding too thin. Following Blitzen Trapper — on a Sunday night — is a tough gig, but the talented band did just fine. After a solid set, they ended the evening with two of their singles, "Time Spent in Los Angeles" and "When My Time Comes." On the latter, singer/guitarist Taylor Goldsmith led the crowd in a sing-along, just like the lead singer of Stillwater would have circa 1974. One could argue that audience members wouldn't have been taping said performance on their iPhones at that particular moment in time, though.
Concert: Blitzen Trapper and Dawes
Date: October 9
Venue: Belly Up