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Concert Reviews:
Bacon Brothers "Play!" together nicely in Lexington

By Gary Graff
ggraff@medianewsgroup.com, @GraffonMusic on Twitte

Posted: Monday, August 19, 2019

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LEXINGTON -- Save for the height of the stage, all degrees of separation were removed as the Bacon Brothers, Kevin and Michael, played a pair of Shakey Ground Tour shows Sunday night, Aug. 18, at the Lexington Village Theatre.

And as they do every time they hit a stage, the pair blew away any notions -- if they even still exist after more than 20 years -- that the group is some mere actor's musical fantasy.

The Bacons' 95-minute early show displayed the kind of polish, depth and deep creative integrity that comes from eight studio albums and plenty of road work. Kevin's acting career -- ironically the season finale of his Showtime drama "City on a Hill" was airing Sunday as well -- was barely referenced, only when he introduced "Beneath Perfection" as a song he wrote and unsuccessfully submitted for the film that was renamed "Tremors" and, of course, a show-closing rendition of Kenny Loggins' theme for 1984's "Footloose" during which he and Michael traded lead vocals and Kevin busted a few dance moves.

The Bacons, both sporting black T-shirts, displayed a repertoire that's still growing, too. The brothers and their versatile four-piece band opened the night on a funky note with their latest single, "Play!," and tried out a pair of brand new songs during the set -- "Bigger Than a Song" and "The Way We Love," both gentle and melodic, the latter one of several to which Kevin contributed harmonica.

Most of the concert dug into the Bacons' existing albums for Americana-flavored material such as "So Cal Smooth," the sentimental "Don't Lose Me Boy," "Tom Petty's T-Shirt," "36 Centers," "She's Easy on My Eyes" and more. Michael, nine years older and a soundtrack composer and educator by day, pulled out his cello during the pairing of "Interlude" and "493," while "Perfect Pitch" turned into a ukulele army with the two Bacons, guitarist Tim Quick and bassist Paul Guzzone all playing the four-stringed instruments. "Two Rivers" steered the group in a jazzy direction, while the night's other cover, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' "Don't Do Me Like That" closed the main set and provided a nice setup for the bluesy fury of the first encore, "Only a Good Woman."

In a world filled with the Davies of the Kinks, the Gallaghers of Oasis and any number of other warring siblings, the Bacons are a welcome flip-side of harmonic symbiosis, musically and personally. The group may still labor, at least to some degree, under the specter of Kevin's "day job," but on Sunday it was best to accept, and enjoy, the music at its high face value.

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