Dinosaur Jr. frontman J. Mascis was back in San Francisco on Saturday with his latest collection of solo, acoustic songs for a sold-out concert at the Independent.
Mascis arrived at the Independent around 9:30pm, walking right through the crowd while the Australian folk duo, Lulac finished their set opening set. No one seemed to notice his pace as he made his way to the backstage entrance, and he was left unbothered
Mascis’ labelmates, Luluc have been traveling on tour with him and played a lovely electro-acoustic set of sensuous indie folk songs. Zoë Randell’s voice was entrenched in a deep alto tone that was peaceful and mesmerizing. Their stage banter was endearing and the crowd politely applauded the band with disciplined adoration.
Luluc was off stage for barely 15 minutes before Mascis sat down with his guitar. Promoting his new album Tied To a Star, he played the single, “Every Morning” and other cuts from the new release. His solo performances are interesting because he sits in front of a pedal board and seamlessly plays the melodies and leads of all the songs breaking from the acoustic folk and pop foundations for fuzzed-out riffs and bridges between songs.
Mascis also broke into songs from older Dinosaur Jr. albums, including “Where You Been.” The crowd didn’t seem to be as moved by Mascis’ much publicized cover of Mazzy Star’s “Fade Into You,” but his voice was magical and the performance was given with sincerity.
The show was simple, peaceful and moved at a pace that Mascis solely commanded. It was definitely minimal, but the crowd seemed engaged throughout—helped in part by fluid guitar solos from that lasted sometimes more than 5 minutes and his signature vocal style.