As if we needed further evidence that Annie Clark can successfully pursue pretty much whatever she wants to do creatively, the mastermind behind St. Vincent held the Electric Factory in rapt attention for two hours last night with a one-woman show. It was just her voice, her guitar and various elements of her creative vision adorning the stage. We saw Clark as a writer and filmmaker, as a design visionary with a flair for non-sequitur fashion; the performance showcased, obviously, her remarkable range on the guitar, and her physical expressiveness in the realm of theatrical gesture and (at points) dance. And it showcased her compelling songwriting, which reaches new emotional depths on the harrowing beauty of MASSEDUCTION, her 2017 album that got a front to back performance.
Since initial images and video clips of the Fear the Future tour began trickling out on social media a month or so ago, the production has been met with some degree of uncertainty. Where’s the band? Wouldn’t it get boring with nothing but Clark and a minimal stage setup? Isn’t this just St. Vincent karaoke? These are all things I heard people say, either online or in person, leading up to the gig. And even taking into account the degree of chauvinism evident in those slags — would you be saying this stuff if Bon Iver decided to rip it to tracks, brah? — the unconventional setup nonetheless meant ticketholders were taking a bit of a leap of faith with this show. In my estimation, they were well rewarded. Continue reading →