Am I awake? Is this a dream? There is deep fog inhabiting my headspace. Those two coffees seemed to have helped bring some life to my corpselike state, and yet once again I have crashed. I’m inside the bizarre alternate reality of Meow Wolf—not exactly the best place to ground yourself.

The sold out show was filling in slowly. Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter came to the stage first. His casual, laid back sound has made both of his solo records, Overgrown Path and As Is Apart, real treasures to listen to. But in this very moment, my mind is in need of a shot of adrenaline, while Cohen and his band are having an opposite effect. I feel lulled, removed from consciousness. The band is tight, on point, but they could use some of the frenetic energy of the band Cohen was once a part of, Deerhoof.

I remain propped up in the balcony, awaiting the wonderful Angel Olsen, whose third full length record has quickly taken her from a rising indie darling to an indie superstar within a short time. By the time that she and her band arrive on stage, the floor is packed densely with fans. It takes only seconds for her to completely win over the crowd with “Never Be Mine.” Her radiant voice, like that of the great Roy Orbison and Patsy Cline, carries a transcendent sadness, and it’s even more stunning live than on record. Early within the set, the opening chords of “Heart Shaped Face” led to the a fraction of the crowd singing the words “I’ve seen you changing” before Olsen. The moment seemed to catch the singer off guard, to her delight.

In my drowsy state, the liveliest songs such as “Forgiven/Forgotten” “Shut Up Kiss Me” and “High-Five” all made for highlights during the set.

Angel Olsen

Chris Cohen