It’s a brisk November night in Syracuse, but at least there’s no snow. Gorham Brothers Music hosted a very intimate and rare performance by Scott Kelly (Neurosis) and Bruce Lamont (Yakuza). Gorham Brothers Music is a locally owned guitar shop that has been doubling as a very quaint concert venue for a few years now. Let’s be honest, it makes sense because the sound quality is amazing!
Unfortunately, I did not make it to the show in time to catch the opener, I, but from after talking with various concert goers it sounds like it was a performance that I regret missing. I did make it just in time for the main act though.
The room darkens and is illuminated only by four giant glowing paper orbs tucked nicely in back of the stage; a quiet and somber hush fills the air, and it is almost chilling when Scott Kelly steps to the mic armed with his acoustic guitar. He is joined by Bruce Lamont. Scott Kelly delivers an eerie and intense set encompassing his various solo works. For this writer/photographer the highlights of the evening include Scott Kelly’s version of “Tecumseh Valley” by the late Townes Van Zandt. Both musicians showcased their talents in their rendering of Neil Young’s classic “Cortez the Killer.” Scott’s somber voice combined with Bruce’s impeccable saxophone playing made for an interpretation of the song that was still stuck in my head the following day. They certainly captured the darkness and morbidity that embody the spirit of the song. After their set, Scott and Bruce took the time to talk with fans before they had to pack it up and head to the next gig.
Overall I can say that this show was one of those incredibly intimate performances that won’t happen very often. If you missed it, then you missed a rarity. It’s nice to see an artist step out of their usual genre and showcase their other musical talents. I tip my hat to Scott and Bruce for a memorable show and of course to John Bukowski for bringing them to Syracuse!