Bat For Lashes at Schubas

I’ve been a big fan of Bat For Lashes (aka Natasha Khan) since I heard her debut album, Fur and Gold, last year as an import from the UK. In fact, I put it on my top 10 list for 2006. The record’s finally coming out this week in the U.S., and Khan and her band came to Chicago for the first time, playing Friday night (July 27) at Schubas. It was an excellent show, similar to the Bat For Lashes concert I saw in March at SXSW. It’s wonderful to watch Khan and her three musicians (all female, all wearing headbands and similar accoutrements) switching instruments and creating these spooky songs with violin, autoharp, a harpischord sound on the Yamaha, bells and drums. No drum kit, though. Despite the lack of standard rock percussion, the songs never drag. Khan has a great voice, and she’s beautiful, too. Her encore was a new song called “Moon + Moon” (or something like that – that’s how it was punctuated on the set list). For someone whose songs are so moody and dramatic, Khan was suprisingly lighthearted and giggly in between songs. The only flaw in the show was that it only lasted about an hour – but since she has just one album out so far, I guess that’s to be expected.

See my photos of Bat For Lashes.

Chicago’s Garbadine played a nice opening set of chilled-out, low-key songs that reminded me of the quieter moments of Magnolia Electric Co. and Palliard. I enjoyed it, though Garbadine could stand a little more variety in its music. My photos of Garbadine will be coming later…

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