Music Review: The Trishas – Cafe Du Nord – 9/1/12

San Francisco’s Cafe Du Nord was built at the beginning of the last century (1907) and it’s Victorian elegance provided the perfect setting for The Trishas angelic harmony. It’s history as a speakeasy during Prohibition gave the place a sense edge that reflected the groups’ menace hat often appears in the Austin Texas quartet.

Once the ridiculous techno house music was cut The Trishas stood at the edge of the tiny stage, perched looking to be ready for take off. “Welcome to our sound check.” Kelley Mickwee announced while tuning her mandolin. “Glade to be here” someone from the crowd called back. And you could tell they were.

The band’s first show in San Francisco (but not their last, they’ll be back in a month perform the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival) has them touring behind their newly released “High, Wide and Handsome, ” which comprised most the entire too-brief set, reflected and solidness of that release. Not a filler cut to be found. Savannah Welch, Liz Foster, Kelley Mickwee and a viability pregnant Jamie Wilson (which caused me no small level of consternation when I saw her carrying her own equipment to and from the stage) backed by honorary Trisha multi-instrumentalist and singer/songwriter in her own right Brandy Zdan had the crowd right where they wanted them with the jubilant opening number Mother of Invention.

Along with their own solely-penned compositions the fertile creative environment their home turf was reflected in songs co-written on with some of Austin’s finest. The pick-your-poison love song Liars & Fools was co-writteen by Jason Eady and the melancholy Cheaters Game co-written by Bruce Robison.

Little Sweet Cigars, co-written with Oklahoma;’s Turnpike Troubadours’ Evan Felker, with it’s galloping spaghetti western with the warding refrain (When you’re kissed by a fool, you’re fooled by a kiss) was a particular highlight causing my friend that had accompanied me to spontaneously to yell out “That’s my favorite song!”

The happenstance formation of the Trishas is well documented , and this night proved that there are such things as perfect accidents.

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