I remember an ex-boyfriend making me a mix back in junior year of high school with José González‘ cover of “Heartbeats” being on the track list. He knew I loved acoustic guitars and folk-singers – one of the few things he did get about me – and although that boyfriend is long gone, I was very glad to have this initial encounter with José González.
His recorded work is certainly mesmerizing in the way that he masterfully plays the guitar and poignantly sings, as it was what caught me initially. That being said, seeing the deliberate and delicate overlay of sounds during his live set was nothing short of miraculous. Five men took the stage and layered guitars, rhythm, their voices and even some non-traditional elements – one man purely clapped and snapped the first two songs. The coherent combinations are simple and effective and so much more substantial in a live performance. It was also nice to hear González’ collaboration with band member and solo artist in his own right, James Mathé (also known as Barbarossa) for the song “Home.”
Headliners was absolutely packed for a Monday night and I’m fairly positive that everyone left with the resounding feeling that was one of the best shows they’ve seen in a while.