Pillow Talk

I know I mentioned in an earlier post that I came here and immediately started looking for work. What I didn’t mention was that I looked for weeks. Upon weeks. I finally landed a job after three months in the city, but due to some bureaucratic idiocy, I was unable to work for some time after having gotten the job. This also meant: still no cash. In any case, a week ago in honor of my soon-to-be-issued first paycheck in five months, I decided that the money I borrowed from my flatmate would be better spent on shows rather than on extravagant purchases like a pillow to sleep on at night. So I made my way down to Privat Club in Kreuzberg to see a band called Night Beds instead.

The band is comprised of five guys from all over the place who chose to base themselves in Nashville, Tennessee. Night Beds is the brainchild of Winston Yellen, whose voice whispers and soars over swelling melodies and hushed tones. Their music follows suit, juxtaposing incredibly stripped down and raw passages against equally lush ones, both capable of gorgeously conveying a profound idea without seeming trite or contrived. Like their debut album Country Sleep suggests, most of their songs have a country tinge to them, but it’s never kitschy and they maintain a sound that’s accessible to many outside of the typical Nashville scene.

I really enjoyed their live performance. We were a small audience, but they clearly gave their all, despite being pretty damn tired after many days on the road. They played some new material that they’re trying out on this tour, in particular a song called Corner, which I thought had a bigger, more percussive sound than those on Country Sleep. I spoke to one of the guitar players, Abe, who said that they’re aiming to “make everyone dance” with their new album, so I’m excited to see what they have in store. My favorite moment of the night had to be when all of them suddenly jumped off of the stage to corral us into a circle around them for their cover Gillian Welch’s The Way the Whole Thing Ends, everyone singing along as they played. It was definitely a borrowed €16 well spent.

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