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Basked in the glow of red lasers and fog, singer songwriter Geoffrey O'Connor started this past Friday's show by preparing his simple stage setup with his trusty Roland drum machine, synth, chorus pedals and reverb-soaked guitar. In support of his new album Vanity Is Forever, O'Connor started with "Like They Say It Does" before going into the dreamy synth world of "Proud," both enchanting numbers that warmed the crowd. O'Connor, ever making a connection, introduced the high school slow dance number "Now And Then" as a song he penned in L.A. but wished he wrote in Seattle. And as more fog rose from the back of the stage out into the crowd, O'Connor sauntered from one side of the stage to the other on "Have Your Way" and "Idle Lover" while climbing on tops of monitors.
With somewhat deranged songs about "buying expensive drinks and feeling like a douchebag", O'Connor kept an enjoyable yet straight and dry approach to his delivery. A bright spotlight shone on O'Connor during "So Sorry" while he was on top of the monitors again with cheers from the crowd. And the climax of his set came as he drove into "Whatever Leads Me To You" with an impressive guitar solo, mic wrapped around his left wrist. Simply gorgeous.
Jens Lekman, with his new EP An Argument With Myself out on Secretly Canadian continued his tradtion of trademark immaculate-style storytelling as he launched into the title track "An Argument With Myself," spilling the beans on a literal argument he had with himself while walking the streets of Melbourne. "Waiting For Kirsten" preceded Jen's explanation of how the song came to be with Kirsten Dunst's mention of Jens in a past interview, which led to a chance opportunity in his hometown of Gothenburg to stalk Kirsten at a hotel (but sadly, with no luck).
Jens fervently dove into his back catalogue with the classic "I Saw Her In The Anti War Demonstration" and then quickly springing into "A Sweet Summer's Night on Hammer Hill." By now, many fans were swaying their hips and singing along to the chorus of "Bomp-a-bomp-a-bomp-a-bomp-a-bomp-a-bomp-a-bomp / can you the beat of my heart..." With no full band accompanying him -- a contrast compared to his past tours -- Jens introduced his lone companion on stage, drummer Addison Rogers to much applause. New songs "I Broke Up A Fight" and "Cowboy Boots" (a new one about having a dream about cowboy boots) were met with approval. And the crowd's favorites continued with "Black Cab" and "The Opposite of Hallelujah," with Jens stepping to the frontmost part of the stage mimicking the ringing of the bells at the end of the song, closing his set with "Sipping on Sweet Nectar."
As an encore, Jens returned on stage alone and performed "And I Remember Every Kiss" with utter delicate perfection, and then called his drummer and O'Connor back out for a cover of Ten City's "All I Want Is Love." This was enough to send everyone dancing away into the night, but with the crowd begging for more songs, Jens acquiesced with one more. With a few snaps into the mic, the crowd followed suit into "Pocketful of Money," singing along to "cha cha" and "I'll come running with a heart on fire."
As Jens humbly thanked the crowd with a fond farewell, there was no doubt he left his fans burning for more.