Thursday, July 26, 2012

Megafaun closes out summer at Duke Gardens

Photos by Kevin Norris
Local superstars Megafaun returned to Duke Gardens on Wednesday evening to close out the 2012 season with bang (the band first played the Gardens in 2009).

After opening with the quirky instrumental "Isadora," Phil Cook has some problems with his banjo. Being the incredibly adaptable band they are, he simply didn't use it on the ballad "The Longest Day" making for a sparse, yet beautiful arrangement.

They rolled through the rest of the set including ballads like "Hope You Know" and "You Are the Light," classics like "Second Friend" and "The Fade" and jams of "Kaffman's Ballad" and "Heretofore."

The band played a stellar cover of the Faces' classic "Glad and Sorry" during the set, but it wasn't the only cover of the night. During the encore, the band gathered around a single microphone to pay tribute to the late Levon Helm with a beautiful cover of The Band's "I Shall Be Released." It was moving to hear the crowd sing along with the choruses.

The evening ended with a cover of Bob Dylan's "Alberta" (not sure if it was #1 or #2) and then a funky version of the Megafaun classic "His Robes."

Megafaun established themselves long ago as one of the best bands in the Triangle and their Duke Gardens performance reiterated their ability to keep things fresh and interesting with new arrangements of old songs (I don't think I've ever heard "The Fade" performed even remotely the same twice). As long as the band keeps making music, we'll continue to follow their journey.

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