Fans of extraordinary, inventive guitar playing got to experience a real treat at New Mountain Asheville on Wednesday, with a sold out show that featured both The Marcus King Band and Eric Krasno Band.
If you haven’t heard of Marcus King yet, you soon will. At only 20 years old, King is wowing audiences all over the country with his guitar prowess and smooth, soulful voice. He is reminiscent of Warren Haynes in many ways, and Haynes actually produced his self-titled debut album, even contributing some slide guitar on the song “Virginia.” Having already secured spots at Summer Camp, Wanee, Rooster Walk, and Lockn’ Festival, it seems like the sky’s the limit for this kid.
Eric Krasno was a perfect complement to the southern jams with his soulful grooves to begin the night. It had been six years since we heard last from Krasno, but it was well worth the wait for his 2016 solo album Blood From A Stone. Opening with “76,” a track from his first album, he and his band wasted no time to bring out the funk. Other highlights of his set included “Jezebel,” “Please Ya,” and the popular recent single “On the Rise.” The ending to EKB’s set was really special. King and the horns section sat in for a very nice cover of “Sugaree,” and ended with a beautiful original “Unconditional Love.” With Marcus King up next, the sold out crowd knew that this was going to be a night to remember.
Next up was the phenom himself. The Marcus King Band consists of King and five other members that make up a very impressive horn and rhythm section. The band kept the party going on a high note with a powerful “Virginia” to begin the set. King had a very nice solo in the song, and it was clear that he was just getting the juices flowing. The next jam, “Cherie Berry,” lasted thirteen minutes and featured standout performances by the horn section. The jams kept coming with “Ain’t Nothing Wrong With That,” which went into an extended “Keep Moving” into Little Feat’s classic, “Spanish Moon.” Perhaps the highlight of the entire night was when King brought out members of Empire Strikes Brass and Eric Krasno Band to join them for a cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Proud Mary.” After a blazing encore of “Plant Your Corn Early,” he ended the show with a slow, groovy jam, “Mystery of Mr. Eads.” The Marcus King Band left another room awestruck on their way to the top, and will continue to do so for many years. Marcus King is here to stay.
Written by Tyler Hurd
Photographs by Jameson Midgett