The mixture of Shins lead singer James Mercer and really any other artist is bound to create something worth listening to, but the team-up of Mercer and producer/songwriter Brian Burton, aka Danger Mouse, makes for something extra special.
The duo’s performance Wednesday night at the Georgia Theatre dripped with talent. Mercer and Burton were front and center, the former crooning into the mic like a younger, saner Thom Yorke and the latter casually swaying and strumming a bass with all the nonchalance of a seasoned performer.
They quickly moved on to other favorites, like “Mongrel Heart,” “October,” “The High Road” and “Medicine”—”We’re going to play ‘Medicine’ now,” Mercer stopped to say. “But the timing has to be perfect, and I know I’m going to be the one to fuck it up.”
But the song was flawless—guitar, drum and bass melodies drifting in and out of Mercer’s signature falsetto, slowing and quieting to silence, ending with Burton playing the tune’s haunting bell closing.
Finally, after more than two hours, Mercer and Burton closed the set with “Holding On For Life,” a song that showcased the strange and awesome dynamic between Mercer’s voice and Burton’s beats. The disco-esque chorus (“You’re holding on for life/ Holding on for life, love!”) backed by an eerie synth and strong bass riff, capped off the night perfectly.
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