There was an otherworldly quality to the atmosphere at the Visual Arts Collective the evening of Feb. 2. Wovenhand took the stage, and the smell of incense filled the air. Dead center in front of the stage was a mid-size candle-lit shrine for Alexa Rose Howell.
"Thank you for coming out on a Monday night," said Wovenhand frontman David Eugene Edwards. Nobody could tell if he was joking, considering it was a Saturday night.
Modest crowds came to see the folksy-bluegrassy band twiddle and echo its sometimes mellow, sometimes rockin'—but always in the key of open roads, dusty skies and rattlesnakes—brand of electric Americana.
And they got that. With practically strummed bass licks and its signature eerie lyrics, the band sounded like the din of a rain dance echoing off canyon walls.
But the audience also got the ditzy, murmuring acoustic stylings of Grandma Kelsey, and the grainy stock scientific footage of atom bomb detonations, cell division and astronomy set to waves of long notes that is Eluder, the night's second act.
In the end, the gamble paid off. The mix of performances (earthy Grandma Kelsey, urban Eluder) seemed to add up to the night's final act, amping the audience for Wovenhand's set for a big win.