Music seen at SPACE Gallery, September 24, 2008
Death Vessel are something Mainers should be most proud of. Joel Thibodeau, the man behind the moniker, is native to Kennebunk, as are many of the transient guest- members of his band. On Wednesday at SPACE, Portlanders got to celebrate the release of Nothing is Precious Enough for Us, Death Vessel’s most promising effort to date (Sub Pop 2008).
Death Vessel are a neo-folk band, also blending elements of ‘60s pop-rock with bluegrass, all layered with a wide variety of instrumentation. Thibodeau has a piercing and heartbreaking soprano that, live, didn’t miss a note. With Micah Blue Smaldone he performed “Mandan Dink” in duet, off 2005’s Stay Close. Later, during the encore, Thibodeau soloed a song from his old band String Builder, knowingly dedicating it to “all the Kennebunkers.”
Death Vessel wed music from the past with music from the present and render something pure and unique. At SPACE, the live performance was bursting with just as much spirit as the record — a rare and precious quality we all were lucky to have back in our home state, even just once.
On the Web:
: Live Reviews
, SPACE Gallery
, Joel Thibodeau
, DEATH VESSEL