Music Reviews

Wednesday night's show at The Pageant marked a big milestone for St. Louis native Angel Olsen, and she seemed to understand that as well as anyone. After several sold-out smaller club appearances, Olsen graduated to The Pageant, and the hometown-girl-done-good stepped up her game for the occasion. 

Entering the stage to an ethereal, instrumental rendition of her hit song "Intern," Olsen was artfully coifed and clad in a black evening gown. Her five-piece backing band (including two members of Mount Moriah) wore matching blue suits with bolo ties. Olsen immediately launched into a spirited version of her tune "You'll Never Be Mine," from her latest album, My Woman; then, going into the fuzzed-out classic "Hi-Five" from 2014's Burn Your Fire for No Witness. Returning to her latest album to round out the first set with "Give It Up."

Following this three-song introduction, Olsen took a moment to address the crowd and comment on the news-heavy week. She apologized, "We didn't learn a Tom Petty song," but took a moment to thank her friends and family in the audience before treating the crowd to a rocking version of "Shut Up Kiss Me."

The crowd was a bit rowdy with many shouted requests (including a man who insisted on yelling repeatedly for Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On"). With a sly grin, Olsen responded, "I have a request -- bring me a shot of tequila!" Her fans obliged, and the show continued on with the more subdued tunes "Lights Out" and "Acrobat." 

Before closing out with a two-song encore, Olsen took the time to say, "I'm just happy in general and grateful to come back to St. Louis." She closed the evening out with a peppy "Night-night!"

Doing double-duty at the show were Mount Moriah's Heather McEntire (lead singer, providing back-up vocals and percussion during the main act) and Jenks Miller on guitar. Before donning blue suits as Angel Olsen's backing band, the North Carolina-natives arrived on stage denim-clad and brought forth rousing renditions of their better-known singles "Calvander," "Cardinal Cross," and "Precita." In addition, the band performed some covers with timely themes: "I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free," a jazz standard popularized by Nina Simone, and Neil Young's "Revolution Blues." 

Click the image below to see all of Dustin Winter's photos of the evening's performances.

Angel Olsen (with Mount Moriah) at the Pageant, October 4, 2017

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