My Morning Jacket, Yo La Tengo
Could there be a more perfectly conceived pairing than these two bands? Particularly early in their career — think covers album Fakebook — Hoboken indie stalwarts Yo La Tengo flavored their sonic experimentation with plenty of country and Americana. Always strongly connected to the musical zeitgeist, YLT and their finely honed pop songcraft — no matter how cacophonous it is on the surface – has kept them relevant to fans and critics alike. My Morning Jacket also weaves in strong country elements, jam-worthy technical prowess and thick layers of reverb into classic American songwriting and makes it their own. Both the Louisvillians and YLT have subtle, often haunting vocals lying underneath dense layers of sound that contain a lot of melody even when the reverb is at its thickest. The dichotomy MMJ's melodies form with the heavier elements of their sound keeps them both tuneful and interesting. Really, the two groups are one extension of the same concept: wrapping up timeless American musical tropes with modern touchstones and exploratory digressions, pushing boundaries without being alienating. The only way this show could be any better is a shared-stage encore, which is entirely possible.
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