“Run, devil run,” Jenny Lewis crooned as she walked down the aisle of the Cathedral Sanctuary at Immanuel Presbyterian, holding a prayer candle and wearing a dress that would likely be deemed a bit short for a traditional church ceremony.
The pews were packed at the church-turned-music-venue to witness Jenny Lewis perform her first solo(ish) album Rabbit Fur Coat from start to finish 10 years after its release.
The alt-Americana album has withstood the test of time with tunes like “Melt Your Heart” retaining their ever-yearning feel, and upbeat numbers like “The Big Guns” still delivering an energetic punch.
Just like in its first go-around, Lewis was joined by the Watson Twins, a female duo who provided layered harmonies, percussive instruments, and synchronized dance moves. M. Ward—who performed a killer opening set—occasionally popped up on stage to offer up a guitar solos and extra vocals on “Happy” and “Handle With Care.”
While the Cathedral offers glorious acoustics—and seats—Rabbit Fur Coat is a particularly interesting album to play under a painted glass image of Jesus.
A self-described Jewish girl from the valley, Lewis’ tunes “The Charging Sky” and “Born Secular” both question the existence of any higher power, with lyrics in the latter proclaiming, “God goes where he wants. / And who knows where he is not? / Not in me.”
But instead of crying out “blasphemy,” fans rose to their feet with praise for Lewis and the Watson twins’ flawless delivery of the beloved album.
While hearing Rabbit Fur Coat start to finish was more than enough to please Lewis’ followers, they were treated to a second set.
After taking a 20 or so minute intermission—and changing outfits—Lewis and the Watson twins returned to play tunes from 2014 album The Voyager like “Head Underwater” and “She’s Not Me,” along with songs from her Rilo Kiley days like “Silver Lining” and “I Never.”
Photos: Mark Ortega