Second chance is one phrase that came to mind watching Jason Pierce as the sun set Saturday evening. When he walked onstage and began strumming the first couple of bars of "Amazing Grace," there was a warm, fuzzy feeling this wasn't going to be the orchestral, graceful Spiritualized that characterizes his latest, Songs in A&E. This was Pierce resurrected, back from near-death, and he used that renewed energy and faith to channel his entire catalog. Backed by a quartet and two backup singers, A&E's "Soul on Fire" and "You Lie You Cheat" were reverent and clean, as opposed to the more fervent psych tracks in the set: He went all the way back to 1992's Spiritualized debut Lazer Guided Melodies and even further back with a choice rendition of Spacemen 3's "Walking With Jesus." As the dust settled in a purple-orange haze across the park, the band tore into a sublime "Come Together," from Spiritualized's 1997 LP Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space, and it was the perfect closer for those in the crowd who were still conscious. The sound guy did Pierce right, and it was a perfect early-evening communion for true fans.
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