penny and sparrow | 03.14.2015

saturday night, i watched penny and sparrow play a show at the anchor, which, probably doesn't mean anything to you if you've never been there and don't know what it looks like. but the anchor is such a gorgeous space, and it fits so well with the penny and sparrow vibe. the perfect pairing, especially when you throw in the whiskey tasting they had (and have) as part of this tour they're on.

if you've never heard it before, penny and sparrow music is beautiful and heartbreaking and hopeful. the songs are somewhat similar sounding, but in a way that makes you want more and not less. sure, you can get a pretty good idea of their style by listening to a single song, but you're missing out if you think you've heard enough after just that one.

their live show brings a whole new dimension to their music, because you get andy and kyle, on stage with their commentary throughout the set. in their music, you can hear the way they're pouring their heart out into the songs, singing openly and honestly about life and love and struggle. but when they are standing in front of you, you can see how it fits together, and that it's not just an act of vulnerability, but who they are as humans. they are real and genuine and when they're on stage, they create a positive atmosphere of community and belonging in the room. even though they're standing on a platform, they're on the same level as us, thinking and feeling the same things. they're just expressing it more beautifully and creatively, and everyone else is there to witness it.

but it's not all heavy boots during their shows. they don't take themselves too seriously, they have fun and make jokes on stage, and they sing hilarious "romantic" cover songs that require a "laugh break" mid-song, because even they can't handle how ridiculous it is.

with the exception of the cover songs, which i took no videos of, here's what i mean:

"creature" was introduced by andy as a song recorded in their early days, when music was just a hobby and they recorded on kyle's white macbook in their apartment behind an orphanage. the sound of children in the background was not artistic, andy explained. they were just broke.

and then, just before they began playing the song, kyle chimed in and said, "this is a song about a monster. it's called 'creature.'"