I’ve seen The Swell Season perform twice. One of those shows was an opening set for Damien Rice about six months before the film Once came out in the States, dramatically raising their profile. I’ve seen male-half-of-the-Swell Season Glen Hansard’s longtime band The Frames play a great show to a half empty 9:30 Club, too.
Anyway, the Paper of Record sent me to the 9:30 Club the other night to cover Marketa Irglova’s first solo tour, supporting her debut album Anar. My conclusion? She’s a great singer but too humble a performer to sustain interest through a headlining-length set, and the songs she’s writing without Hansard all seem to share one, slow tempo. To be fair, I don’t think Hansard’s as good a songwriter on his own as he is when collaborating with her, either. Here’s the review.