For a few hours in February the blue island in an otherwise red state found refuge from the mind-numbing monotony and divisiveness of our world today. This reprieve came in the form of punk laden rock stylings of Ezra Furman.
Opener, and fellow Bay Area musical entrepreneur, Kelley Stoltz showered those in attendance with his vibrant and genre-spanning sound, only aiding in the growing atmosphere of the evening. Touching tracks from at least three of Stoltz’s prior releases, the rock assembly aptly prepped the room for an unforgettable musical experience.
Superficially political, contextually human, Ezra Furman and crew played to a comfortably filled Neurolux on a Thursday evening in February that will be remembered by those present as anything but unforgettable. Spotlight hesitant, when Furman stepped to the mic there was no pause, no restraint. The presence of each song, spanning Day of the Dog, Perpetual Motion People, through Twelve Nudes, Furman was unrelentingly front-and-center and captivatingly brilliant.
Like a modern era Lou Reed, Furman commands the crowd with the lyrical poignancy and instrumental personification that leave you hanging to each and every beat, chord, and word. Behind hair draped over her face and explosive fret dominance, Ezra Furman never ceased to bring the attendees into the song and showed a humbled appreciation for those standing in awe and those who are fighting to find themselves, be themselves, or to stand up for what is right.
Ezra Furman exists in a world that is not wholly prepared for such a presence. That didn’t stop fans of music and humanity from getting a firsthand glimpse into the message and collectively welcoming embrace that is Furman’s style. The world is made that much better from such a musician and such a live show.