Must-See Concert of the Week: The Swell Season


In what seems like the 95th straight day of the coldest summer of our lives, the two best palliatives are getting out of the fog and listening to great live music. You can do both this Thursday when The Swell Season comes to Saratoga to play Mountain Winery.

The duo of Irishman Glen Hansard and Czech pianist/singer Marketa Irglova burst onto the scene in 2007 in the film Once, for which they won an Oscar for the heart-rending theme, "Falling Slowly." Hansard alone—who also fronts the killer Irish band The Frames—packs enough vocal power and soul to bowl over any skeptic, like a refined and modern Van Morrison. But add in Irglova's delicate soprano and suddenly you're in the realm of magic, and of love. Hansard and Irglova were a couple for two years after making Once, and broke up last year in the midst of recording their new album, Strict Joy. Listen to any song at random, and it's all there: longing, connection, respect, sacrifice, truth, friendship—every ingredient of a beautiful relationship. Simple and timeless, and just the antidote for this gray, dreary summer.

Swell Season Cheat Sheet: It doesn't take more than a few listens to become addicted. Buy tickets here.

Falling Slowly

When Your Mind's Made Up

Low Rising

In These Arms

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