Exter vs. Kimock | 10.12 | Philadelphia

Words by: Aaron Polli

Exter vs. Kimock :: 10.12.09 :: North Star :: Philadelphia, PA

Exter vs. Kimock :: 10.12 :: Philadelphia by Dan Savage
North Star has been a corner institution since Prohibition, serving up drinks for almost 90 years, and musical acts since the late 1980s. On this evening, a very special acoustic night of music is hosted, including the up and coming Exter vs. Kimock.

Combining smoky New York club style songwriting with a wide range of modern and classic beats, the young duo presents an interesting addition to the music landscape. Fresh off a fall leg of Crazy Engine shows, drummer John Kimock and cello player/vocalist Trevor Exter have been well seasoned by spring, summer and fall tour dates around the Nation and parts of Europe.

At about 8:35 p.m., the duo claimed their respective spots and instruments onstage. The first track chosen is "Drink Deep," featuring special guest Daniel DeJesus on a second cello. The song is preceded by a musical interaction between the two cellists, reminiscent of an Indian flute song, a beautiful template for the introduction of a bluesy funk number.

This leads us to a very serious jam in the middle of the tune, both cellos magnificently complementing and inspiring the other, all the while further deepening the groove. And in beautiful form, the song breaks and Exter finishes the chorus a cappella, a trademark of "Drink Deep." Soon "Mexico" takes hold of the audience, a bouncy number that struggles with inner turmoil and the pains of leaving one's home. Kimock's playing is very exact and quiet on this number, beautiful accompaniment to a cautionary tale.

The set progresses with a hard-hitting, almost punk song and a dynamic jam showcasing remarkable control by both musicians. Exter performed "Passion" solo, patiently painting memories of lost lovers. After yanking on further heart strings with "Back In My Arms," the duo drop into Bon Iver's "Lump Sum." A bold choice, the cover is pulled off beautifully with haunting melodies and delicate execution. As the lyrics pass softly, and the song ends rightfully, a quick nod and smile and the duo launch into "Night Train," where Exter sings, "In this life you have guns, and you have church." Amen, brother.

JamBase | Philly
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[Published on: 10/26/09]

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