Thursday, March 31, 2016

Recording: Witch Prophet

Artist: Witch Prophet

Song: Funeral For a Killer

Recorded at The Great Hall's Conversation Room (Long Winter 4.5 – Night 2), March 18, 2016.

Witch Prophet - Funeral For a Killer

You can't fault Long Winter for being ambitious and for wanting to close out the season by cramming in as much music and art into the Great Hall as possible, but their plan to close the year out with a two-night stand didn't entirely pay off. Giving patrons the choice of two nights (and holding them at the end of Spring Break) seemed to especially cut into the younger crowd and both nights (especially Friday) lacked that "about to burst" feeling that makes LW unique. But even if the crowd was at less than maximum strength, there was no certainly no lack of music spread throughout the building.

With the crowd reaching a critical mass and the room feeling warm and sweaty, this set suddenly felt like a full-on Long Winter experience. Ayo Leilani has gotten more committed to this solo identity than the last time I saw her performing alone and under her own name. Now, although she was joined onstage by her Above Top Secret bandmate SunSun, acting as beat controller, there was a definite sense that this was a distinct project with its own identity. (But still two sides of the same coin, as was demonstrated later in the set when the pair "covered" an ATS track.) With a video loop of Afrocentric images projected behind her, Leilani delivered a confident set of R&B songs that draw in bits of gospel, trip-hop and much more. This track, which recently manifested on Leilani's soundcloud, is a tantalizing taste of the Witch Prophet album, which is promised for later this year.

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