Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Aug. 15, 2008
Sarah JaffeStubb's, Aug. 9
Saturday's show inside at Stubb's served as a triple CD release, wrangling a lineup of North Texans. Dallas' Dove Hunter opened, delving into debut The Southern Unknown, though the band's fervent fans offset the intimacy of the following sets. The quintet's songs torque the tension between Jayson Wortham's strained, whispered wail and extended jams led by drummer Quincy Holloway's ferocious back line and Chad DeAtley's bruising basslines. Micah P. Hinson, who recently returned to Abilene from Austin, was forced to fight the remnants of Dove Hunter's crowd with his stark solo set. Stripped of their elaborate arrangements and understated crescendos, Hinson's tunes lingered in an emotional balance as his burned voice crackled over cuts from new LP Micah P. Hinson and the Red Empire Orchestra, the gentle touch of "We Won't Have to Be Lonesome" countering the disillusion of "Beneath the Rose." Benefiting from the reverential reception denied Hinson, 22-year-old Dentonite Sarah Jaffe delivered on her excellent John Congleton-produced debut EP, Even Born Again. Behind her stunningly deep and dexterous voice, the title track swelled mournfully with Kris Youmans' electric cello, while the soft lilt of "Black Hoax Lie" and subdued "Backwards/Forwards" most impressively wrought the passionate pull of her vocals, proving Jaffe a major new talent.