Cory Chisel Review

Cory and Adriel sharing the mic for a lullaby-like song. (Excuse the poor Instagram skills–it was dark.)

If you haven’t had the chance to check out Cory Chisel, get on it. A folkish songwriter with a touch of country (think: Ray LaMontagne), Cory made a stop in Des Moines last Thursday with Norah Jones. And Cory made it clear from the beginning– “It’s gonna be sweet or it’s gonna be weird. I like it either way.”

Sweet is a better choice. A packed Civic Center welcomed them to the city and they immediately jumped into a frolicking tune only to stop at the end and share some sympathy “for the person sitting dead center to have to go to the bathroom and have to step over 8,000 people. And I look forward to staring at them and making it awkward.” Every song had a humorous anecdote to be shared at the end that made for a fun evening.

Cory’s counterpart, Adriel Harris, has a sweet set of vocal chords rivaling Julia Stone’s of Angus and Julia Stone. The intimacy of the show was only exemplified by the little things that Cory and Adrien added to the performance–sharing a microphone during a lullaby-like song, Adrien’s heel tapping to the beats, and Cory’s exploration of the stage. The show was phenomenally personal for such a large venue.

They mixed different styles into the set-list–gospel, Tom Waits-esque vocals (and a cover of his), blues, and clap-along interactive bits. This performance was a trip back to traditional folk music and while the audience may have been sitting the whole time, there was not one person who wasn’t groovin’ in their own way–tapping toes, head bobs, shoulder shimmies; it was all there.

If you’re looking for a new sound to add to your line-up, look no further. And make sure and hit up his next show when they come back around.


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