Jens Lekman at Bottom of the Hill, 6/2/09

by Gordon Elgart on June 3, 2009

Was Jens Lekman as serious as I expected?

Was Jens Lekman as serious as I expected?

For some reason, I thought Jens Lekman would be very serious.  I’m not sure why I thought this, but I assumed he’d stand up at his microphone, quietly singing his songs by himself.  So I was more than pleasantly surprised to see him dancing happily along with his 5-piece band right from the very beginning of the show.  He had a smile pasted on his face the whole time, and so did I.

My first clue should have been that the opener for this show was not a pair of nameless local bands, but a somewhat well known comedian, Tig Notaro.  She’s not only very funny, but she handled a talkative drunk girl in the front row with a small amount of grace and a large amount of humor, even taking her drink away from her and telling the crowd not to let her to the bar if she tried to go back.

Jens Lekman came on stage and began singing I’m Leaving You Because I Don’t Love You before the band began to play.  This was his way of saying “I have a beautiful voice, and I’m going to show it off for the next hour and a half.”  And so he did.  He also had quite a repertoire of witty banter, which is a must for any singer-songwriter.

I’d like to give kudos to fans of Jens, as they participate gladly every time they’re asked, and even at appropriate times when they’re not asked.  There was plenty of singing along throughout the set, and when given instructions to harmonize with him, everyone did so.  The show was sold out and everyone seemed to feel privileged to be there.  I heard hardly any chatter during his quieter moments.

I managed to take note of the setlist.  You are reading that right, about the Boyz II Men cover.  The second encore was Jens all on his own, without the band.

I’m Leaving You Because I Don’t Love You
The Opposite of Hallelujah
New Directions
Black Cab
Your Arms Around Me
The End of the World Is Bigger Than Love
Kanske Ar Jag Kar
An Argument With Myself
A Postcard to Nina
Maple Leaves
Into Eternity
Sipping on the Sweet Nectar
————
Water Runs Dry (Boyz II Men cover)
Sweet Summer’s Night on Hammer Hill
————
Shirin
Rocky Dennis’ Farewell Song to the Blind Girl

Gordon Elgart

A music nerd who probably uses that term too much. I have a deep love for bombastic, quirky and dynamic music.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Caroline June 4, 2009 at 10:23 am

What the hell is this, Gordon?

“My first clue should have been that the opener for this show was a not a pair of nameless local bands”

Are you drinking while your writing these reviews? I expect more of you.

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Gordon Elgart June 4, 2009 at 10:50 am

I can’t figure out what’s wrong with that sentence? Take a look at the openers for other Bottom of the Hill shows. Sure, they have names, but they’re just anonymous local bands. Having a comedian open for him means that Jens obviously appreciates a good joke, and that he’s not just a shoegazer.

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