It’s been nearly a year since breakout indie rocker Courtney Barnett last played Music City, then a part of a joint tour with friend and collaborator Kurt Vile, in celebration of their great 2017 teamup LP, Lotta Sea Lice. Since then, Barnett, who broke out in a big way with her 2015 full-length debut, has released a fantastic new LP, Tell Me How You Really Feel, undoubtably one of our favorite efforts of 2018, and returns for her first Nashville headliner ever (after previously opening a show at Exit/In several years back) tonight, Oct. 25 at Marathon Music Works, with buzzy indie rocker and longtime site fave Waxahatchee. Incredibly, tickets are still available here as of writing, and given the incredible talent of both performers, this is surely one of the most essential outings of the fall. Grab your spot now, and read out for more about the lineup!
It would be hard to argue that any new indie artist has had more buzz in the past few years than Courtney Barnett. The Australian singer-songwriter has been winning fans over worldwide with her witty lyrics and psych pop sound since 2012, when she self-released her debut EPs I’ve Got A Friend Called Emily Ferris and How To Carve A Carrot Into A Rose. Barnett was subsequently picked up by Mom + Pop Records, where she repackaged the songs into a double EP release A Sea of Split Peas featuring breakout tracks like “Avant Gardener” and “History Eraser.” In early 2015, Barnett released her debut full-length, Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit, featuring the incredibly catchy single “Pedestrian At Best,” which set off a whirlwind of worldwide attention, increasingly more high-profile tour dates and festival appearances, an even a joint album, Lotta Sea Lice, last year with kindred spirit Kurt Vile. Combining elements of garage and psych rock with humorous pop lyrics and a deadpan Aussie accented delivery, Barnett’s songs are earnest and accessible, yet speak of the self doubt, frustrations, and growing pains of being a 20-something today. With this year’s sophomore LP, Tell Me How You Really Feel, already an album of the year contender, Barnett managed to further hone her sound, approach, and lyrical prowess, churning out further instant classic tracks like “City Looks Pretty” and “Nameless, Faceless,” and cementing Courtney’s status as an enduring, cool, and essential modern indie rocker.
Hailing originally from Birmingham, Alabama, opener Waxahatchee, helmed by singer-songwriter Katie Crutchfield, is an eclectic, indie punk/folk driven project which first rose to critical prominence with the lo-fi, bedroom recording release of her 2012 debut American Weekend. Soon relocating to Brooklyn, and subsequently bouncing between New York and Philadelphia in the ensuing years, Crutchfield returned home to craft her followup, 2013’s Cerulean Salt, which showcased a more personal, actualized, and polished batch of songs, helping further her indie darling status and grow her fervent, organic fanbase, as she toured more frequently and made countless festival appearances. 2015’s emotionally resonant Ivy Tripp continued to broaden Waxatchee’s critical appeal and cult following, and with her latest LP, Out in the Storm, which arrived last year, Crutchfield crafted her most self-reflective and autobiographical effort to date, honing her sound and building on everything that came before. With a penchant for penning personal, soaring songs, Waxatchee is a project that deserves every bit of buzz she’s received over the past several years, and if you haven’t yet seen Crutchfield and her band live (or you have, and you already know how great they are), we strongly suggest you show up early and see for yourself why this made so regularly make the trek to Music City!
Courtney Barnett and Waxahatchee will perform tonight, Oct. 25 at Marathon Music Works. The show is all ages, begins at 8:30 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.), and tickets are available to purchase for $35.