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Kristin Hersh, HQ, Dublin, 28th April 2001

Just over a year after her last performance in HQ, Kristin has dropped the band again and has strapped the acoustic guitar back on. She didn't seem to enjoy the lay-out of the venue for what was a rocking gig last time, but this time the seated lay-out suited her perfectly. Having played solo and unplugged more times than not in the past few years, Kristin has this down to a fine art.

The support act was instantly forgettable, unfortunately bringing to mind echoes of other forgotten indie acts that should have remained forgotten. Kristin Hersh, on the other hand, brings to mind many years of classic acoustic music. The set was culled from her four acoustic albums, "Hips and Makers", "Strange Angels", "Murder, Misery and then Goodnight" and "Sunny border blue". Stand out tracks were the Appalachian folk songs 'Down in the willow garden' and 'Cuckoo' and, of course, the magnificent 'Your ghost', as well as a delicious nod to her past in the Throwing Muses with 'Hook in her head'. Not that the rest of the tracks weren't good, it's just hard to remember what they were, having concentrated on listening and enjoying the music instead of writing this review in my head.

Between the tracks, we were entertained with a steady stream of banter and stories, including how embarrassing her children are, how her bad language got her in trouble in Spain and many other tales. She did show a very unhealthy respect for Irish taxi-drivers, though, someone should show her the footage of what happened over the New Year!

Donnacha DeLong

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