SO HAPPY TOGETHER: The Fleet Foxes, Starlight Ballroom, Last Night
Fleet Foxes endorse banjo virtuoso Frank Fairfield, and you probably should too. Foxes’ opener, armed with a banjo, a few guitars, a fiddle, and a rocking chair, mesmerized the crowd for thirty minutes with indecipherable lyrics and a deluge of either sweat or tears. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for tears, though, in the interest of sheer manliness.
Fleet Foxes know how to captivate Philadelphia’s hipster/old people/lumberjack scene. Back to the 215 for the second time in just a few months, the Foxes packed the Starlight with more flannel than I was aware survived the end of the 90s. Even better: the entire mass of old flannel hipster lumberjacks joining in on the contagiously sing-alongable White Winter Hymnal.
Fleet Foxes boast some of the strongest and most beautiful harmonies you’ll find anywhere, and being in the presence of them is all the more impressive. Lead vocalist Robin Pecknold puts every fiber of his being in to every note he sings, and the rest of the band follows suit with perfect harmony.
Fleet Foxes, simply put, is the best new band of the year—bar none. Thanks to a stellar set (essentially every FF song, a new one, and a cover), flawless execution by Pecknold and company, witty banter between songs, and some burly-ass beards, the Foxes put on one of the greatest shows this reviewer’s seen in a long while (save for maybe those five Brits who came through a few months ago).
- Fleet Foxes are politically informed! After acknowledging that the audience was missing the VP debate to share the evening with them, a resounding “SARAH PALIN’S A BITCH!” came from the crowd. Pecknold’s response: “You know…I think the term might just be ‘unfit to lead.’” Word.
TEXT AND PHOTOS BY MICHAEL DONOVAN