Live review — DM Stith

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Brooklyn singer-songwriter DM Stith played at the tiny Hoxton Hall on Wednesday night. Despite the unassuming venue and endearingly shambolic showmanship, it turned out to be a performance of transcendent, spectral majesty. Seriously.

Accompanied by a small band including strings and the weirdest-looking drummer ever (blue silky shirt and a trucker cap - quite a combo), the surprisingly boyish Stith played several tracks from his recent debut, including the mournful "Thanksgiving Moon" and the joyously unhinged "Fire Of Birds", closing his set in near-darkness seated at an open-faced piano. Stith, real name David, comes from an ultra-musical family (his father is a former church choir director and mother a pianist) which explains both his own pitch-perfect delivery - his voice, though fragile and warbly, is as pure as a bell - and his slightly obsessive guitar-tuning. It was a captivating performance that made the miniscule auditorium suddenly feel like a sunken cathedral. Stith, full name David Michael Stith, marked himself as a not-of-this-world performer in the Antony Hegarty vein; if you happen to be in Dublin this weekend there are worse things you could do than catch his show at Crawdaddy on Saturday. 

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His debut album, Heavy Ghost, came out earlier this year (it was reviewed in the April issue of Esquire). For a taste of the haunting beauty of which he is capable, this is "Pity Dance", complete with spooky video by Ryan Jeffery.