On Wednesday May 21st, Michael Vermillion and his band play a show at the Tractor Tavern to celebrate their debut album, Last Night on Earth. The album is a wide ranging piece of americana. The song “I Hate Losin’” is dark and sinister, while “Roadtrips” is relaxed and carefree. “Moses” grinds along like a big rig (appropriately) and the title track soars skyward. And then there is the ultra catchy, but inherently creepy “Out of Place in Your Arms”. The songs bring many other artists to mind; A little Tom Waits here, some Jeff Buckley there, and the trumpet makes me think of Beck. All of the pieces come together and work.
From 2001 to 2005 Michael Vermillion played bass in the emo/sceamo/whatevermo band, Vendetta Red. After leaving the band he began playing solo acoustic shows around town. He eventually added a full backing band, including peddle steel and the previously mentioned trumpet, to give the songs a much more lush sound. Michael contributed to the Lonesome Rhoads album and has also collaborated with Vince Mira, the sixteen year-old reincarnation of Johnny Cash.
If tomorrow night’s show at the Tractor is anything like his previous shows, Michael Vermillion will throw several covers into the set. He has a large repertoire of covers including songs by Merle Haggard, Tom Waits, Johnny Cash, and Leonard Cohen. But the greatest service Michael provides is exposing people to the music of Townes Van Zandt. It is highly probable that tomorrow’s set will include Michael’s version of Van Zandt’s “Waiting Around to Die”, which was also recorded for the album.
So get down to the Tractor Tavern tomorrow night and check out Michael Vermillion. Opening the show are Mario Matteoli and Lonesome Rhoads & the Good Company.
Michael Vermilion – http://www.myspace.com/michaelvermillion
“Have You Seen…” #1 -Michael Vermillion by Matt Koroulis