Lovely Mellow (In A Good Way) Show At The Paradise

The Milk Carton Kids (MCK) are riding high, in part due to their talent and in part from their appearance in ‘Another Day, Another Time‘ (the documentary about the New York City concert that presented the music of ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’).

The Milk Carton Kids

The Milk Carton Kids

Last night, they performed to a sold-out crowd at The Paradise Rock Club, a venue not known for presenting folk acts. Hopefully they will consider adding similar acts (and MCK again, although I predict they will be booking larger venues) after MCK’s stellar performance.I first saw MCK perform last summer at the Newport Folk Festival and thought they put on an excellent set; I was excited to see them again in a more intimate setting.

Joey and Kenneth, The Milk Carton Kids

Joey and Kenneth, The Milk Carton Kids

Kenneth Pattengale and Joey Ryan are MCK; they formed the group three years ago in California after Joey heard Kenneth perform.  I’m guessing that their musical chemistry came very naturally because it feels as if they’ve been a duo for many years.

Joey and Kenneth

Joey and Kenneth

MCK uses minimal staging – they sing together around an old-fashioned style of microphone and don’t appear to have any amplification on their guitars other than the mic. That creates a pure sound which enhances their music. Their minimalism seemed incongruous with the huge tour bus that sat in front of The ‘Dise!

MCK

MCK

They played songs from all their albums, and even introduced us to a song they wrote on this tour. That could have been the first time they performed it; Joey asked the audience not to record it and the audience surprisingly obliged.

Their harmonies are enchanting; both have lovely voices and trade leads easily. They play vintage guitars which adds to their folksy aura. For those of you who think folk music is boring, think again after you see MCK perform.

Joey does most of the bantering; he can be sardonic, but he has a quick wit. There were several times last night when I saw Kenneth laughing, and one instance when he got caught off-guard and momentarily forgot the lyrics!

MCK

MCK

I could not get a photo of Joey’s face (other than their curtain call), a fact that was not lost of them; they bantered about being able to turn so that the sides of the crowd could see something other than their butts but were unable to do so. I am taking the liberty of posting a photo I took at Newport last summer.

MCK at Newport Folk Festival

MCK at Newport Folk Festival 2013

Opening the show was Brian Wright, a singer-songwriter currently based in Nashville; he is touring this spring with MCK.

Brian Wright

Brian Wright

He proved to be an ideal opener for MCK; his songs are intelligent and clever.

Brian

Brian

He also appeared to be a minimalist. Brian and his guitar (as well as a harmonica for one song) played using the same old-timey mic that MCK used in their set.

Brian

Brian

The audience last night was the most respectful I have seen outside of a jazz club in many years (I’d say 35). People were quiet and listened to the songs; I didn’t notice people moving around much during their set; and I didn’t look out on a sea of LCDs all evening. I hope The ‘Dise books more acts like MCK.

 

About suze72

I've loved the arts all my life... I go to a lot of concerts, take lots of photos and want to share them. Every once in a while I do something other than a concert, too. The Boston area is full of opportunities to indulge my passion - I'd like to help make it yours too!

Posted on May 1, 2014, in concert reviews, music, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Peter S Brown

    nice. looking forward to seeing them in cville.

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