The Music in the Gardens series at Duke seems to have the blessing of Mother Nature this year. Last night, there was another fair chance of storms headed our way, but they never materialized, leaving Lonnie Walker and Mount Moriah free to play sets in downright comfortable weather.
Mount Moriah got things started with a fantastic set of alt-country-tinged tunes. The beautiful melodies and lush music filled the gardens with great sounds. The band will release a new album with a release show at The Pinhook in Durham on July 31 and said that they're already in the process of working on another album. You want to see this band. Trust me.
The spastic Lonnie Walker came next, who plowed through a lengthy set, extending past sunset.
They got things started with "Feels Like Right" from the WKNC Hear Here compilation. During the set, the band tore through songs from their debut album These Old Times as well as some newer numbers. The catchy, frantic song "Compass Comforts" was a crowd pleasing closer for the night.
While the band's high energy carried the set, almost all of the songs could have shorter. Many of the songs had fake out moments, where the song seemed to be ending, then there would be another few minutes. While it's fun the first few times, it certainly gets old when it's repeated over and over again.
Next week's show will feature the Grammy nominated jazz stylings of Kate McGarry and Keith Ganz.
[all photos by Kevin Norris]