Angel Olsen at the Grey Eagle — A Show Review

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Angel Olsen. What comes to my mind when I think about Angel Olsen? True iridescence, every emotion I’ve ever felt all at once, a whirlwind of experiences I want to enjoy over and over again as well as forget about entirely. Olsen is by far the one honest voice I’ve been able to depend upon for the purest of comfort since the release of Strange Cacti in 2011. So, as I’m sure you can imagine, my life was forever changed when I saw her live in her hometown of Asheville, North Carolina on the first of the month. A rather perfect way to start off my favorite month of the year if I do say so myself.

I’ve never been to a concert where the audience has been completely silent before. Being in the presence of a woman as ethereal as Angel Olsen though, who wouldn’t be hypnotized to the point of absolute tranquility? At times, everyone sung along and we couldn’t stop ourselves from occasionally sobbing a little too loudly. Yes, sobbing, it’s inevitable and I fully expected there to be tears. I willingly participated in the crying and although slightly embarrassing to admit, it started before she even appeared on stage.

Olsen is easily the kindest live show I’ve ever been to. We all respected one another, no shoving or yelling. At one point, the girl in front of me even turned around to ask me if I had a decent view, which has never happened before. There’s something very intimate about weeping in a room full of strangers who are also whimpering to some extent. We were all experiencing an array of varied emotions , but metaphorically there was a small solar system we’d created in the venue that night and our sun was, of course, Angel Olsen at her most radiant. Her voice haunted each of us individually in it’s own unique way, her petite mouth barely moving, but curved into the most sincere smile throughout her performance.

Tragically, the show came to an end with Olsen playing synthesizer and sensually moaning her song, “Woman,” at us. As if I wasn’t already swooning and overpowered by my love of her, I was so lost in the wholesomeness of her voice at the end of the show, I instantly felt as if I’d lost a part of myself when she walked off stage and the lights came on. Now here I am, typing this review while simultaneously doing my laundry, and I can still lucidly taste the salt of my tears that night. Overall, if you ever get the chance to experience Angel Olsen in concert, don’t hesitate, not even slightly. You won’t regret it.

Written by Maddie Hudgins

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