It was an extraordinarily fine evening.
It started with drinks at Dos Taquitos, with a bunch of my favorite people.
There were grapefruit mojitos:
and an unbelievably good strawberry/guava/habanero margarita.
(and that is guacamole with sliced radishes in the background.) And there were fish tacos, too.
But the main course, the whole reason we were out and giddy on a Wednesday, was Mumford and Sons. Playing at our hometown Raleigh amphitheater. I even heard the sound check this afternoon, while “working” at my office. (Pretty sure the boss and everyone else knew I was a lost cause, efficiency-wise, once the sound check started.)
I have decided that I love the Raleigh amphitheater,
especially when a train goes by during the show. And I love the skyline view from inside, and I love watching the R-Line cruising around, and I even love the tiny lawn.
But mostly, tonight, I loved the band.
Mumford and Sons were exactly what I wanted them to be. Their songs were piercing and lyrical, and most of them have a slow build that is surprisingly powerful. They don’t shy away from dark themes, and they manage to juggle a remarkable number of instruments without any of them getting lost and becoming background noise. The new material was every bit as engaging as the songs from their Grammy-nominated debut album.
As great as the polished and intense accompaniment is, I think the strength of this band is the combination of killer harmonies, gorgeous vocals, and songwriting. These four guys could sell out a show if you gave them an empty stage and four microphones, and told them to have at it.
My favorite, favorite moment of the show was when Marcus Mumford stood onstage alone with the shiniest, reddest guitar I have ever seen. I wanted that shiny red guitar. But more importantly, I believed every soulful, perfect word when he sang, directly to me:
“There will come a time, you’ll see, with no more tears
And love will not break your heart
But dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart, and flowers in your hair.”
And I think we all deserve that. Don’t you?