Death Vessel

I’ve joked in the past that it seems like a lot of male singers want to sound like girls. Well, in any case, a lot of men sing falsetto, stretching their voices up as high as they can, hitting notes the sort of notes most women can hit a lot easier. But it’s rare when men singing in a high range actually sound like women. It’s not just the pitch that you hit – there’s some other quality that makes it sound feminine or masculine. Joel Thibodeau of the band Death Vessel is one of those guys who does sound like a girl – which is not a bad thing, but just a little strange when you first experience it. I saw Death Vessel last Saturday (Aug. 30) at Schubas, touring to support the band’s new record on Sub Pop, Nothing is Precious Enough for Us. The music is a pleasant sort of folk rock, reminding me a bit of Sufjan Stevens (the banjo-plucking side of Sufjan Stevens rather than the Philip Glass orchestral side). The group’s bassist, Micah Blue Smaldone, was also the opening act, playing a solo set of even folkier music, fingerplucking his 12-string guitar and singing in a high, quavering voice – which somehow did not sound feminine.

Photos of Death Vessel.

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