Live From LouFest | Lost in the Trees, The Low Anthem, Feedback

Yeah, that’s some kind of crafted dinosaur-like creature in the crowd. It’s one of Lost in the Trees’ puppets, and they had a few folks from the audience give it life. I actually hesitated to post this pic, because I don’t want you to get the wrong idea — yes, they’re a touch theatrical; no, they are not the Decemberists. The seven-piece folk/art ensemble from Chapel Hill, North Carolina is huge on being precise, and that’s what makes them special: they really care about hitting every note. I’m now a fan.

The Low Anthem was almost just as special, although it took a bit before they really hit their stride. I thought “To Ohio” was a beautiful performance, and “Ghost Woman Blues” was wonderfully executed. But, the highlight of their set was a song called “This God Damned House,” a lyrically-chilling story about a couple who has been split apart (exactly what happened to one of them, we’re never told). At the end of the song, lead singer Ben Knox Miller produced two cell phones, held them up to the microphone, and got them to “talk to each other.” A fitting end for a mysterious song.

Finally, I just came from Area K, where Feedback, one of the “High School Battle of the Bands” winners, just finished their set. Their lead singer, Asuka Okuyama, can certainly carry a tune, and the rest of her band can flat out jam. They even covered Led Zeppelin’s “Rock ‘N’ Roll,” and did it justice — just like any high school rockers would. I hope to see more of them in the future.

Feedback | Photo by Jason Gonulsen

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