Molly Sarlé at Ace of Cups
Molly Sarlé debuted her solo career last year with Karaoke Angel. The Durham native and one part of the trio Mountain Man performed at Ace of Cups in a manner that resembled a casual karaoke bar. On stage with just her guitar, Sarlé carried the show as an attentive crowd bopped and nodded.
The set started with a cover of Big Star’s “Thirteen.” Sarlé vocals had a dramatic intonation to them, a crescendo that added emphasis to certain lyrics.
Sarlé told the crowd she was not feeling the best, and had to look at pictures of Adam Driver earlier to brighten her mood. The crowd laughed as she tuned her electric guitar for the next song.
“This song is about a karaoke bar in Big Sur, California,” Sarlé told the crowd as she dove into the title track off her LP. The chord changes and her rhythmic vocalization made the track feel bigger and more produced than a one-person show would be expected to deliver. The track ended with the tempo slowing, and one last harmonic.
On “Almost Free,” her soft strum took a backseat to the ethereal vocals creatively painting a picture of a difficult family matter. Her delivery was unique, some of the notes coming out full and loud, and some stumbling in, with scatter and cooing, vocals moving from high to low. The tune ended with a Fleet Foxes-like transition into a minor key outro that seemed like it belonged in another song.