It was a true joy to witness the return of Waxahatchee to New York City. Their last tour, in late 2021, found Katie Crutchfield and her band calling it after their show at Brooklyn’s Elsewhere (see pics from that show), after a member of their touring party came down with Covid. That show itself was memorable but the band’s stop on February 10th at Brooklyn Steel certainly felt like a victory lap.
Performing songs off her excellent 2020 album, Saint Cloud, Crutchfield, and her band played a confident and engaging set befitting the empathetic and open-hearted songs she writes. It felt like an appropriate time to revisit these songs, which evoke Spring and lilacs (reinforced by the band’s stage setup, festooned in flowers and vines) and is indebted (but never feels contrived) to Americana, folk, and the “three chords and the truth” approach of classic country. Highlights included “Oxbow,” “Can’t Do Much,” “St. Cloud” off her latest, as well as covers of Lucinda Williams’ “Fruits of My Labor” and Dolly Parton’s “Light of a Clear Blue Morning” (which both appeared on the expanded edition of Saint Cloud). The performance was a stark reminder of Waxahatchee’s prowess both as a performer and songwriter, operating in a class with few peers.
Madi Diaz opened the show with a stirring, mostly solo, set of songs off her recent album History of a Feeling.
Scroll down for pics of the show (photos by Emilio Herce)