Photos + Video: Sharon Van Etten @ The Earl

Over the course of her three albums, Sharon Van Etten‘s sound has progressively grown lusher and louder. Fans were a bit surprised when her 2010 album Epic featured a full band and stood in stark contrast to the more intimate collection of songs on her debut Because I Was In Love (2009). Her latest release Tramp continues to expand the instrumentation on her records, but manages to keep her powerful vocals front and center.

With a backing band of three, Van Etten’s show at Atlanta’s The Earl focused on that fuller sound she has moved towards since her debut. In fact, nearly the entire set was played loud and full of energy – a vibe she looked completely comfortable in.

During the first tuning, back-up vocalist and keyboardist Heather Woods Broderick mentioned that the band had been watching Saturday Night Fever backstage before the show. That led to a full discussion with the crowd about John Travolta’s 1970s sex appeal and acting chops. With fans shouting out names of Travolta films, Van Etten laughed and thanked the audience for making her feel at ease on stage.

From that point on the show was a conversation. Not just in the ongoing banter between songs, but the songs themselves. The singer was actively engaged with her fans – more than a performer on stage in a world of her own. As a result, she had a captive audience during the raucous jams as well as the quiet, spellbinding moments when it was her and her acoustic guitar.

Mid-set, she gave the band a break and, at an audience member’s request, performed “A Crime” from Epic. The video of that song is below followed by a photo gallery and set list.

Sharon Van Etten – “A Crime” – Live in Atlanta 04/25/12

[youtube id=QIJkP0s5eJE showinfo=0]

Setlist – The Earl, Atlanta, GA 04/25/2012

All I Can
Peace Sign
Magic Chords
Don’t Do It
Give Out
In Line
A Crime (solo)
I’m Wrong
Joke or a Lie
Save Yourself (encore)
Love More (encore)