When: Fri., Sept. 17, 8 p.m., Sat., Sept. 18, 8 p.m. and Sun., Sept. 19, 5 p.m. 2010
It's been four years since Raleigh via Eau Claire, Wis., quartet DeYarmond Edison broke up. Now its components are better known as the avant garde Americana trio Megafaun and falsetto-voiced bedroom folkie Justin "Bon Iver" Vernon. The four friends and former bandmates have teamed up again on several occasions for short tours and onstage collaborations, as well as within the indie-rock-meets-R&B supergroup Gayngs. Still, the scope and scale of their partnership on this occasion—a weekend run to be recorded for a 2011 live release—is unlike anything they've done since DeYarmond's 2006 residency at Raleigh's now-defunct Bickett Gallery. It should yield equally rewarding returns.
Joined by their own mutual admiration society of tender Brooklyn singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten and Richmond-based brass band Fight The Big Bull, Megafaun and Vernon will reinterpret selections from Sounds of the South, Alan Lomax's landmark anthology of Southern spirituals, blues numbers, bluegrass breakdowns and Appalachian ballads. Those who witnessed the Bickett residency might remember that the foursome's previous explorations of songs from that canon remain among the most gorgeous work by anyone in that axis, complete with their trademark haunting harmonies. The choice of the once-hallowed sanctuary of the Hayti Heritage Center as the venue is ideal, casting a spiritual overtone to these sacred Southern tunes. Friday and Saturday performances begin at 8 p.m. while Sunday starts at 5 p.m. Tickets are $26 per night, $5 per night for Duke and NCCU students. —Spencer Griffith