I absolutely expected Mark Kozelek to be an intolerably depressed guy. I love a lot of his music but I understand that he can write it because he's had a lot of shit in his life like wife cancer and dead parents so I thought man I'm looking forward to this but I'm not looking forward to him being all sad and shit, moping around like a donkey. I was so wrong. So so wrong. The guy could have done stand up.
He comes out and he looks like Elvis and he says how y'all doin and people murmur and someone says how are you and he tells us about his uk tour, how he's spent the last two weeks travelling around really shitty places playing to small audiences consisting solely of fat guys with backpacks.
His set is so nice, like a wind-up toy perpetually winding down, everything slow and delicate and haunting, everything covered in dust, evoking nostalgia despite the absence of memories. He plays variations on recordings, extended tracks and complete reworkings. They have movements really, they have prologues and epilogues, musically and lyrically, and there's magic in the transitions. It's so damn sad and beautiful.
And he plays all night.
And it's perfect.