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Sacred Heart Music Center, Duluth, MN
Friday, 11 June 1999
with Father Hennepin

i just want to start off by saying that i must now owe my first born child to some supernatural power. that's the only explination i can think of that would explain why i had the privilege of seeing this incredible show. it was beautiful, haunting, personal -- all at once. the only better setting, i can think of, to hear low play, would be to hear them in my living room.

first off, the space. the sacred heart music center is located in a beautiful old church, mini-cathedral styled with a barrel vaulted ceiling, large main nave, stained glass, and an old alter in the front. the audience even sat on old wooden pews.

scott "dj starfire" lunt's band, father hennepin, opened the night and let me say they did a great job. they are a five piece band who, as starfire said, are used to playing in bars, not in church. they have starfire on guitar, a piano/accordion player, a second lead, a bass and a drummer with a smaller kit (not as small as mimi's, but basic). for the most part country doesn't really intrest me. however, father hennepin kept me entertained and glad i had come early enough to hear them. they did a mix of original songs and covers. one of the covers was a tom waits song. some funnier songs were one with guest singer "doctor tomorrow" singing in russian and doing the "fiddler on the roof" style dance, and a song about drinking and smoking weed. maybe starfire can provide more details and give credit to his band members. alan sat across the aisle from me during father hennepin, busy operating the sound board.

while father hennepin and low took down and set up, respectively, an organist played on the church organ, though i didn't catch what the piece was.

at this point, i should mention something about the lighting in the building. because the the church wasn't designed with typical stage lighting in mind, it was hard to light properly without a lot of extra equipment being brought in. basically, the people who put on the show had to decide whether they wanted to have the stage well lit and the audience mostly lit *or* the audience in complete dark while the stage is mostly dark. while father hennepin was playing, the stage was mostly lit, which worked fine. though i'm sure they couldn't really change it with direct sunlight coming through the stain glass windows early in the set. however, by the time low came on it the sun had set, and they could turn off the lights and have it really dark. the only light emited was from some candles placed on stage (they even had to use one to light the soundboard); two stage lights propped on the ground (one on alan and one on zak); and a stage light with a motorized four colored disk which slowly turned, set up so it projected on the wall behind the band. the overall effect was beautiful. it achieved a wash of lighting over the stage similar to the effect of placing a flashlight in front of your face for telling ghost stories around the campfire.

the audience was great. very quiet. i sat in the first pew right in front of alan and was so close i could hear when his feet shuffled around or the click of the switch on his pedal when he would tap it! (i felt guilty about taking pictures more because of the click of the shutter seemed noisy than because of the flash. by the way, i'll pass on some scans to catherine when i have them developed -- here they are.)

here is the set list...

- lord, can you hear me?
- starfire
- i remember*
- weight of water
- don't understand
- words
- the plan
- two step
- immune
- (talking about pavement)**
- lust***
- soon
- ocean
- be there
- will the night

*i just wanted to add to the recent argument about whether or not mimi was playing in a particular photo or if it was between songs. mimi played sitting down during this song.

**alan had asked for requests at this point and there was the usual ones. "venus," "over the ocean," "lust". and i yelled several things out. but when i yelled "small words," al stopped and said "no. no one knows that song." and he then proceeded to talk about how he saw pavement play in duluth the other day and how he kept thinking about that he wanted to hear songs by them he knew, not the songs from their new album, and how this was different than when low played, he wants to play all new stuff. then, alan mock thought out loud "hey, why don't they play that song that goes..." and he started to sing the first couple lines from a pavement song to which someone in the audience yelled for him to "play that song" and he started to try and pick out a couple cords. mims says, with that hilarious tone "don't even start..." very funny.

***alan introduces "this song isn't exactly appropriate for church, but..." mimi "it's not that kinda lust".

****alan had talked between "lust" and "soon" like it was their last song of the night, so when they came back out he was like "aren't you sick of sitting on these hard seats?"

as far as the songs go "lord, can you hear me?" was awesome, i almost cried. "don't understand" was overpowering. "be there" was probably my favorite of the night.

afterwards, i got to say hello to mimi and zak and to talk to alan for a little. but i had to leave right away, because i worked the next morning and had to drive two hours back home. but i would have gladly quit work, and school for that matter, just to see this one show. anyone who didn't go really missed out!

long live alanmimizak.


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