Chill jams and good times

Chill jams and good times  image

This past Sunday night at The Mothlight was chock-full of chill jams and good times thanks to Chastity Belt and Darren Hanlon. The warmth of the music was welcomed on the surprisingly chilly summer night. Both acts are well-loved by many and it was amazing to see them come together and do their thing for the excited folks crowding the West Asheville venue. 

The arcade machines in the back of the venue cycled through their demo screens and conversation was had over clanging beer bottles as opener Darren Hanlon walked up on stage. The veteran Australian singer-songwriter was about to play his very first show in Asheville and the audience couldn't be more pumped. Donning a trucker hat and a nice fitting button-down shirt, the 43-year-old musician looked sweet and charming before the music even started. 

He played a mixed assortment of tunes from his large catalog that spans two decades. In between wowing everyone with his impressive guitar skills and smart lyrics he made conversation with the crowd and engaged the concertgoers. At one point he even asked if anybody had any requests, a question that was met with an enthusiastic reply asking to play one of his older songs “She Cuts Hair”. He took a moment to practice the chords, but then played it perfectly much to the crowd's delight.

After the request, he played a final song about how he survived a highway shootout on a bus—a perfect way to close out the uplifting and bright set by Mr. Hanlon. He said his goodbyes and then cleared the stage in anticipation for Chastity Belt's turn to rock the house. The girls quickly got their things ready and the intermission was over just as soon as it began. 

Chastity Belt introduced themselves to The Mothlight and noted how it was their first time playing a show in Asheville. The crowd gave them a warm welcome and then it was right into the tunes. They  opened their set with “Complain” off of their recently released third studio album I Used To Spend So Much Time Alone. Equal parts shoegaze and post punk, the real shining feature in the band's appeal are their simplistic yet relatable lyrics like “I've had a drink and ate some stuff / Now I'm already bored.” 

The good vibes carried on into the evening and every member of the band looked cool as a cucumber as they jammed their way through all their different tunes. All in all, everyone (on stage and in the crowd) had a killer evening with the gals of Chastity Belt and Darren Hanlon. Hopefully they'll both be back around here sometime soon.

Image Credits: 

All photos by Holden Mesk of Asheville Music Guide