Monday, July 11, 2011

Review: Bill Callahan @ The Cave 7/6

Last Weds, Bill Callahan, of Smog fame, played in front of a packed sweaty crowd in a small man made cavern under a hill on Lexington rd.
Louisville Artist Mike Ratterman and his wife Annie hosted this small show of about 200 people in the limestone brick cavern under their home  that some believe was first made to haul Cholera victims safely to Cave hill Cemetery for burial.
The show was promoted by Ryan Davis of Sophomore Lounge and Ratterman, both of whom decided to keep this show quiet due to the limited space and notoriety of the headliner.
the show started with Austin band Hidden Rituals, who formed in November 2010 and are touring in support of their new self titled album.
Bill Callahan, who is touring in support of his 2010 novel "letters to Emma Bowlcut" and his 2011 LP Apocalypse, began releasing records under the name Smog in 1990, and under his own name since 2007.
By the time he hit the stage with 2 friends, the ground water dripping on the audience had turned to steam and the crowd was a wet hot mess that could care less about spooky dark wet atmosphere and was completely delighted at his intimate approach amplified by the natural echo produced by the vaulted stone ceiling.
Callahan played guitar and sang for about an hour and was accompanied by an electric guitar and small drum set. and although the 20' x 70' cavern had only four 40 watt bulbs and was too dark to see the band, the setting was unique and intimate and suited the voice and personality of this indie mainstay perfectly.
I spent some time outside, as the heat was a little much at times, and noticed the audience spanned from young college folks to older family types that only shows the reach Bill Callahan has after 20+ years on stage.  this 4th event at 'The Cave' was good time for all, and hopefully there will be more events to come, perhaps in the fall...

Bill Callahan "Riding for the Feeling" live @ THE CAVE


Anonymous said...


Great video! Bill Callahan seems like the perfect artist for The Cave. I love how his voice goes so well with the slightly spooky vibe.

Can't wait to share!

-Wes Davenport

johnking said...

Thanks Wes! I really wanted to share that experience but it was so dark there was no point trying to capture the band, so i just aimed at anything that i could see. Luckily the sound was so good, the visuals became secondary.
That night was the first time hearing tracks from Bill's new album, and I can't wait to hear more!
the whole evening was a really fun time.