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Live Recap: Lucy Dacus @ Neighborhood Theatre

The night began with a bit of a twist.

Fans packed Neighborhood Theatre in the NoDa district of Charlotte to witness the talent of singer-songwriter Lucy Dacus. As the show's start time came and went, Dacus came on stage to announce that, unfortunately, the show would be delayed because the tour bus driver drove off with their equipment and crew was unable to locate them. Although surreal-sounding, the tour bus that was previously parked in front of the venue doors on E 36th Street indeed was not parked there anymore.

Determined to make the best of a strange and surely stressful situation, Dacus treated the venue to a 30 minute acoustic set, taking recommendations from the crowd.

Lucy Dacus

Bathed in blue light, she had the audience melting in her hands. The 6 song setlist opened with "Trust," and culminated with a fantastic rendition of "Green Eyes, Red Face."

The bus was evidently tracked down and openers Crooks & Nannies were able to take the stage. Although the crowd was already buzzing from being privy to an intimate performance by Dacus, they welcomed the Philly-based musicians with open arms.

After a land acknowledgement from a representative of the Catawba Nation, the lights dimmed and projections videos from Dacus's childhood appeared on the onstage screen. Her latest album Home Video is akin to a collection of short stories, as her poignant lyrics are complimented by rich layers of melodies.

On stage, Dacus looked and sounded right at home as she played through her range of songs, assisted by the audience singing along during each one. "Hot & Heavy" was a hit as the crowd bopped around to the tune that's extremely fun to listen to, yet has the ability to make your heart ache. Her performance was complimented by stunning stage lighting and interesting animations projected on the screen behind her that correlated to each song.

She ended her set with "Night Shift," the lead single off her sophomore album Historian, and the performance was a lesson in the art of concert-driven catharsis. With Dacus blazing along on guitar, the crowd screamed along so loudly to the last two minutes that surely the residents in the apartment building next door to the venue heard every word. She followed with an encore of Springsteen's "Dancing the the Dark."

Dacus has a repertoire full of songs as rhythmically beautiful as they are lyrically devastating. Teetering perfectly between indie rock and folk, she's a natural storyteller who cultivates narratives with such tenderness and sympathy it makes the listener feel as though her stories could belong to them as well. This element of connection she has with her audience was on full display with not a single dry eye left in the venue. Lucy Dacus gave a brilliant demonstration in the beauty of vulnerability and fans were grateful to be welcomed in to her world full of compassion and honesty.

View the full photo gallery below! Photos by Keira Lindgren


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