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Hamilton Leithauser at Cafe Carlye (January 16, 2018)

By Will Oliver, February 12th 2018

Last November we saw Hamilton Leithauser headline his biggest solo performance to date at Brooklyn Steel. He kicked off 2018 with a set of much smaller performances making up a 10-night run at the historic Cafe Carlyle. I caught the first night of the run on January 16, my first time at the fancy upscale venue (a jacket is required to enter) which provided a rather epic dinner before the performance began.
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Looking back on the year of music in 2016, one of the clear standouts for me was I Had a Dream That You Were Mine, the debut collaborative album between Hamilton Leithauser and Rostam. The album is still heavily in rotation for me and hasn’t worn out it’s welcome one bit. In fact, the album somehow finds ways to get better and better with every new listen, finding new ways to surprise me.

I saw Hamilton and Rostam’s first performance together last September at Rough Trade NYC. Leithauser has been hard at work on tour in 2017, but mainly operating by himself on tour, as Rostam has been busy with his many other projects. However, Rostam found some free time to join Leithauser just in time for his three sold out performances in New York in February, including two nights at Music Hall of Williamsburg, as well as Bowery Ballroom, which we attended on February 25.
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On June 2 Hamilton Leithauser and Paul Maroon (both of The Walkmen) played at the intimate Brooklyn venue Union Pool to a sold out attentive audience.

In 2015, the duo released their collaborative album Dear God which for a while was a vinyl only release that the duo actually hand-delivered to fans who purchased it online in their cars. The songs off of it is very reminiscent of the more subdued songs of The Walkmen, as well as Leithauser’s 2014 solo album Black Hours.
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Hamilton Leithauser at Bowery Ballroom (January 30, 2015)

By Will Oliver, January 31st 2015 — with 4 comments

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Last night Hamilton Leithauser returned to New York for a headlining slot at Bowery Ballroom. The performance was the final one on the tour for his debut solo record Black Hours, and what better place to do it than New York City?

I had caught Leithauser twice in 2014, with the first being an elaborate record release show at Joe’s Pub with a full backing band, with the other coming at an opening spot with Death Cab for Cutie at The Capitol Theatre, featuring just Hamilton and fellow Walkmen member, guitarist Paul Maroon. For this show at Bowery, Leithauser’s band featured Maroon, along with Fleet Foxes’ Skyler Skjelset on bass, and Leithauser’s brother-in-law, Hugh McIntosh, on drums.
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Hamilton Leithauser @ The Capitol Theatre (May 22, 2014)

By Will Oliver, May 23rd 2014 — with 1 comment

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Last week I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Hamilton Leithauser was opening up for Death Cab For Cutie at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York. The venue is a much more convenient drive for me than NYC (believe it or not), and the one-two punch of Hamilton and Death Cab was dreamy.

It was only a month ago that I saw Hamilton play one of his first solo shows at Joe’s Pub. That show featured a giant 14-piece band, and was every bit as grand as it sounds. This opening set that he played last night was much different, as it featured only Hamilton and other Walkmen-bandmate Paul Maroon.

This time around Hamilton offered alternative acoustic versions to the tracks off his soon to be released debut album Black Hours. Hamilton played an acoustic guitar while Paul handled an electric. These were much more subdued and hushed versions than what I heard at Joe’s Pub, something that actually fit the context of the quaint atmosphere that The Capitol Theater provides. It felt like a private moment that Hamilton was allowing us to be a part of, something of a treat.

It was cool to hear the songs in this form, further proof that Hamilton is a jack of all trades.

You can stream the seriously terrific Black Hours right now over at NPR.

Check out some more photos of his performance last night, posted below, along with the lyric video of album cut “I Retired.”

“I Retired”:


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Hamilton Leithauser

Hamilton Leithauser’s debut solo album Black Hours will now come out on June 3 instead of it’s original release date, May 6 (via Ribbon Music). It’s available to pre-order now, with a deluxe edition as an option.

Leithauser has followed up first single “Alexandra” with “11 O’Clock Friday Night.” There’s a strong familiarity to his work with The Walkmen here with a tropical twist, xylophone and all. It also features some light vocals (very light) from Dirty Projectors’ Amber Coffman. It’s a winner, another solid sign of things to come from the rest of Black Hours.

It’s available to streamĀ  below. I’ve also shared the official music video, which was directed by The Walkmen’s guitarist Paul Maroon.

“11 O’Clock Friday Night” Music Video:


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