Over the summer I got an announcement that A Silent Film would be at
The Kessler Theater in Dallas on November 3.
I immediately began scrambling and jockeying for passes and interview opportunities, obviously. So, the months went by, and finally the night was here. I’ve been steadily going to shows in the DFW area since May of last year, but this is one venue I hadn’t seen yet, so I was both curious and excited.
The Kessler is a nice little place with easy, convenient parking, and the staff was very nice when I arrived. The waiting area/bar is so neat and well-kept, but not to the point of alienation and discomfort, and there are places for people to sit and shoot the breeze while waiting to get inside. Now, the layout of the auditorium is unlike anything I have seen. It is small, and intimate, and there are seats with tables in front. The balcony is a series of comfy chairs all angled towards the stage. Like I said this was truly unique.
First up was L.A. band Hands, and I thought they were very good, and they really warmed up and engaged the crowd well. Definitely someone I would see again. The same cannot be said for The Orbans. They were a one-way ticket to Snoozeville, let’s leave it at that.
At last it was time for A Silent Film. In my interview a few days prior singer Robert Stevenson promised us some new songs, and he meant it. The first of these was called “Lake Swimming”, and let’s get this out of the way: IT, and all the other ones performed had best be on the upcoming album because every single one of them was outstanding, and instantly memorable. From here the band went into “This Stage Is Your Life” and another new one before drummer Spencer Walker had some things to say behind the kit. He really is one funny guy, and the back-and-forth between him and Robert was very entertaining.
“Cuckoo Song” and “Queen of a Sad Land” off of A&GS’ Top 10 Album of 2012 Sand and Snow were next, much to the delight of everyone in attendance. It’s not just the ladies who love this band, make no mistake. Everywhere I looked, including right next to me, guys were bopping and singing along to every word. A pair of new tunes, one entitled “Stranger” followed suit and both sounded great before a rousing version of “Love Takes a Wrecking Ball”. It’s funny. Sometimes with new songs, you risk a three to four minute loss of momentum. Not with these fans, though. Everyone, me included, was absolutely mesmerized by these new tunes, and this album can’t get out fast enough in my opinion.
From their debut, The City That Sleeps, the band played “You Will Leave a Mark” and then Robert engaged us in a call and response before crowd favorite “Harbour Lights”. The first time I heard this I had chills at my desk, it is so good! “Thousand Mile Race” ended the main set but you know there had to be more comin’, right? Robert took to his piano and politely asked if he could play a new one that they’ve never played live ANYWHERE. Of course we roared in the affirmative!
What happened next is hard to describe, but I’ll try: As the song began, some people were yapping. Well they were quickly shut down by the rest of us as the song, “Evergreen” unfolded before us. I can’t even do it justice. It was moving, powerful, and beautiful, and it is forever etched in my memory as one of those concert moments that you just can’t buy.
Once again, Spencer let us know that the guys would be at the merch table meeting everyone after the show, and he also said, “Whiskey. I’m not saying it’s a deal-breaker. But we do love it.” which got a big laugh before they tore into “Danny, Dakota, and the Wishing Well”, one of THE best songs of 2012 as well.
When all was said and done, I could definitely say that
this was one of the best shows I attended this year.
Now I am predominantly a hard rock/heavy metal guy, but A Silent Film’s music transcends all talk of genres. It isn’t something you listen to, it is something you feel. I am so glad that I was able to see them live in such an intimate venue. It’s a memory I will always have, and THAT my friends is why I do what I do, to share these adventures with you, and hopefully some of you take the journey with me.