“It’s a snow globe outside”
So said Cortney Kirby, Lincoln Exposed organizer, as the snow fell onto O street as seen through the window of Bodega’s Alley, where we were watching Will Hutchinson and his band early Friday evening.
The snow kept coming throughout the night and it didn’t get any warmer when walking from club to club. That likely cut down Lincoln Exposed attendance -- but it sure didn’t put the chill on the music on a night when I was reminded that Lincoln has some fine bands.
Inadvertently, my night became a hear-the-record-live evening as three of the four bands I saw in their entirety either have recently released or will be putting out new records.
That began with Hutchinson, who tags himself as “Singer-guitarist for hire.” To my ears, he’s the best singer-songwriter working in Nebraska today.
And, those smart, melodic numbers like “Eagle’s Song,” a tale of an ill-fated romance between a mouse and the bird of the title, come fully to life with the band, with guitarist Werner Althaus added Telecaster guitar stylings that take them toward country and a shade of rock ‘n’ roll.
Hutchinson’s new album is “Wildflower People” and it’s excellent. I’ll be writing more about it soon.
Red Cities put out “Soft Target,” a blast of political punk last year and delivered it with fury at 1867 Bar.
With the sound dialed in as well as I’ve ever heard Red Cities live, the quartet tore through most of the album. In fused tight fashion.
Byron Anway’s words came clean as a bell decrying class warfare and Russia on “It’s Political” and singing of Japanese girls writing books on their phone as riffmaster Matt Bokovoy drove the music.
The Killigans have a new album coming this spring and, from the early mixes I’ve heard, it’s going to be a killer.
The Celtic punk outfit played a couple of those songs at Duffy’s Tavern, impressing with the jumping, gang-vocal powered (I think it’s called) “Bartender.” The rest of the night-closing set was just as propulsive as The Killigans made the most of playing Lincoln Exposed for the first time in five years.
A band that connects with its audience, with passion and power, The Killigans are, simply, a treasure.
Then it was back into the snow globe, which apparently quit shaking as the snow was gone by 2 a.m.
Lincoln Exposed concludes Saturday.