The Civil Wars Serenade New York City

The Civil Wars
Town Hall – New York City
October 27, 2011

The Civil Wars took to the stage in New York City on October 27, 2011 at the historic Town Hall, and did not disappoint in the least.  It was fitting that this band picked such an old music venue on a night which was dark, cold and dreary.  Their music is hauntingly beautiful in a charming, old fashioned kind of way. 

The Civil Wars is a duo consisting of Joy Williams and John Paul White, who explained that they met in Nashville at a simple songwriting session.  They blend their distinct voices to create their own form of Americana/folk/alt-country music.  Their live show was very simple as  John Paul played an acoustic guitar while Joy mainly sang along with him.  She occasionally sat and played the piano, but mainly stood beside her co-part.  There were no flashing lights or high production effects.  Instead, the duo lets their music do the entertaining – and their fans greatly appreciate that. 

I was blown away by how amazing they sounded live and how their voices blend so well together.  Their music truly is unlike anything today’s music has to offer.  They were fantastic on the dark “Barton Hollow” and the beautiful “20 Years”.  John Paul had a plethera of jokes for the crowd between songs and Joy danced on stage in an adorable and playful manner. 

What was most impressive was their very unique cover of Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”, which served as the first song of their encore (a video clip can be seen below).  The set flowed perfectly and the duo sounded incredible.  They have an extremely simple, yet likeable stage presence.  If you have not heard The Civil Wars yet, you are in store for a refreshing musical experience. 

Setlist:

1) Tip of My Tongue
2) Forget Me Not
3) From This Valley
4) 20 Years
5) I’ve Got This Friend
6) My Father’s Father
7) Barton Hollow
8) Falling
9) Go
10) I Want You Back
11) Henry
12) To Whom It May Concern
13) Birds of a Feather
14) Disarm (Smashing Pumpkins Cover Song)
15) Poison & Wine
Encore
16) Billie Jean (Michael Jackson Cover Song)
17) Dance Me To the End of Love (Leonard Cohen Cover Song)

Videos:

20 Years
Barton Hollow

Billie Jean