It was a hot Sunday that was destined to get hotter. The menu for the night was Katacombs, Amigo the Devil and Murder by Death. When you look at the names, you might thing this would be a downer of a night but, in fact, it was quite the opposite. It started out with the trek back down to Berkeley California and the UC Theatre. It’s always a pleasure working this venue. The sound, stage and staff are all top notch.
Katerina Kiranos (AKA Katacombs) was up first. Her exotic, sultry voice is only matched by her beauty. Her short, but poignant set consisted of all the tracks off her album You Will Not. Flowing in and out of English and Spanish, she kept the audience mesmerized and entertained. As she worked through her six song set, she dodged at least one marriage proposal and gained many more fans. Fortunately, this wasn’t the last we would hear from her because, she was to join her big brother on stage next.
Katerina Kiranos – keyboards/vocals
Amigo the Devil was up next and what a set it was! So much of it was a big sing along with the audience. Throughout the set the band would come and go leaving Danny on the stage doing his thing. What is his thing you may ask? Dark humor mostly. With songs ranging from “I hope your husband dies” and “Hungover at Jonestown” to “From the Boston Terrier’s Perspective”. Amigo the Devil provides a unique, albeit ego driven, look at life and has fun doing it. This will not be the last time I see them. Amigo the Devil are now on my list of bands I have to see every time they come through the area. As one of the lines in the afore mentioned “Hungover in Jonestown” says, “If life is a joke, death is the punchline”. I can get behind that.
Amigo the Devil is:
Danny Kiranos – vocals, guitar, banjo
Katerina Kiranos – keyboards
Jason Dietz – bass
David Talley – guitar
Carson Kehrer – drums
Lastly the headliner Murder by Death took the stage. With their deep vocals and moaning cello, they play what could be called western goth or what I like to say, country noir. This unique sound sets Murder by Death apart from the rest. Their set consisted of many of the old classics and three off their new album “Spell/Bound”. Crowd favorites included, “I’m Coming Home” (from Sons of Anarchy), “Until Moral Improves, The Beatings Will Continue”, “Space” and “Pizza Party! (at Gloria Estefan’s House)”. There was even an impromptu rendition of a song about a snake or something from Adam’s old band “Mustache!”. Even he couldn’t remember how it went (it was close to 20 years ago) but, everyone had a good time with it. one of the highlights for me is always “Last Night on Earth”. With it’s longing vocals and distinctive cello, it’s one of those sad songs that just wraps around you like a good hug.
Murder by Death are:
Adam Turla – lead vocals, guitar, keyboards
Sarah Balliet – cello, keyboards
Dagan Thogerson – drums, percussion
David Fountain – piano, percussion, mandolin, banjo, lap steel, trumpet, accordion, backing vocals
Tyler Morse – bass, backing vocals
Emma Tiemann – violin
This was such an awesome show! The bands were all having a good time despite it being just a couple of stops from the end of the tour. The audience was 100% into the whole night and, I am sure, looking forward to the next time they come through the Bay Area.
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Photographer of about 10 years, I have been shooting concerts for about 8 of those years. I started to get serious about concert photography about 6 or 7 years ago and now try to shoot as many as I can. I shoot mostly rock but, have done some country and big band stuff. I love music and since I am nowhere close to being a musician, this is a way I can be a small part of what, in the words of Henry Rollins, “gets me through the highs, the lows and everything in between”.