Tuned In: Wye Oak’s “Holy Holy” The Highlight Of An Exceptional Late-Night Music Slate

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Last night’s television lineup was a bounty of musical riches: Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros played Conan‘s Summer Concert Series; Bono and The Edge, promoting Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark (the show’s musical guests), performed “Stuck In a Moment” off-the-cuff; Britpop revivalists Viva Brother made their US television debut on Jimmy Kimmel Live!. Plus Jordan Knight and Imelda May! It’s not often that we have difficulty choosing a highlight among the evening’s musical performances, so we encourage you to check them all out (linked below).

That said, Baltimore’s Wye Oak won the night with their performance of “Holy Holy,” from their third album Civilian, on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. The duo has a knack for sounding bigger and louder than they appear, and this performance was no exception. Drummer Andy Stack always keeps his left hand free for backing keyboard chords, and lead singer Jenn Wasner‘s deceptively simple electric guitar playing alternately hangs back for verses and fills the air for choruses. The band has been slowly but steadily building a following since their 2007 debut If Children (re-released by Merge in 2008), and refining their sound with each new release. Last night’s television debut was a great showcase of March’s Civilian, their best album yet, and we expect even better from the band in the future.

Elsewhere on late night…

Conan: Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, “Janglin’”
The Late Show with David Letterman: Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark: “A Freak Like Me Needs Company”
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Imelda May, “Mayhem”
Jimmy Kimmel Live!: Viva Brother, “Darling Buds of May”
Lopez Tonight: Jordan Knight, “Let’s Go Higher”