One of the first things KT Tunstall did when she took the stage Wednesday night at the Historic Sixth and I Synagogue was thank the audience for selling out in roughly 35 minutes. We all cheered to congratulate ourselves on such a tremendous feat and to show our enthusiasm for the performance we'd been waiting so long to see. So long. The doors opened at 7, and it was about 9:50 before KT finally went on. For the first 2 hours or so, we sat through mediocre man-band Miggs and angstful and unkempt Robert Francis. I think we gave them all a fair shot. But after the first song didn't see ladies' underwear flying towards the stage, the Miggs lead singer said, "After the show, we're just going to play in the RV because we like an audience that pays attention." We stopped paying attention. Robert Francis had a few teens of both sexes squealing from the first couple of rows, but the show turned very emo very fast. There were lots of songs about fire and darkness and burning and pain. Then I may or may not have broken his loop pedal with my sheer mental will.
The second thing KT did after she took the stage was start up her own loop tracks, full of human beat boxes and back-up doo-wops. You may have caught on that I'm not the world's foremost loop pedal enthusiast, but that didn't prevent KT from KILLING it. Every song was equal parts energy and talent, as she worked her way through a setlist that covered her greatest hits like "Big Black Horse and a Cherry Tree" all the way to her recent EP Scarlett Tulip, which is only available at shows and her merch site.
whiskey barrel guitar
Did I mention the talent? During the course of the night, KT played numerous guitars, including one above whose body is made entirely of whiskey barrels, the piano, drums, um, how do you say?...oral percussions, and the kazoo. And the whole show was laced with witty banter in her irresistibly Scottish accent.