Over the Rhine is not a new band. They have performed for 25 years, but that doesn’t stop them from making more music and touring. Their current tour is what brought them to Whitworth on Wednesday, Nov. 5 for a concert as well as a lecture hosted by English professor Fred Johnson. Although this wasn’t the first time Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist, members of
Over the Rhine, played at Whitworth, the last time was nearly 15 years ago. Detweiler commented during the performance that the first time they came to Spokane, they played at “a little place called Whitworth College.”
The lecture was in the chapel and it allowed for the duo to discuss their music and their songwriting in a more intimate setting with the students and fans who attended.
“Once the band started to sing at the lecture, it solidified a lot of attendance at the concert. They capture something special in live music.” Johnson said.
The actual performance took place in the MPR at 7:00. Detweiler and Bergquist were accompanied by a third member, Bradly Meinerding, who played a myriad of instruments throughout the night including the mandolin, resonator, banjo, and guitar.
The band played several different selections of songs from their discography. A good portion of the songs were from Meet Me At The Edge of the World, one of the more recent releases from the band. There was also a song played from the newest album, Blood Orange in the Snow, which is the group’s Christmas album. It was released the day before the concert at Whitworth on Nov. 4.
The band not only writes and records their own music, but they also release it themselves on their own music label that they operate, Great Speckled Dog.
The songwriting of the band lyrically is perhaps the centerpiece for the group. While talented musically, the lyrics really lead the songs. Topics of the songs include a sense of home, love, the country and family.
The band’s lyrics have references to literature. For example, Over the Rhine’s first album, “Till We Have Faces,” was named after C.S. Lewis’ book of the same name. That prompted the English department to head the event and sponsor the band’s visit to Whitworth. The department helped with security, ran the merchandise table and helped load the band’s equipment before and after the show.
The concert ran for roughly an hour and fifteen minutes. Not only was there music, but the exchanges between the husband and wife and the crowd added to the overall atmosphere of the concert and showed their proficiency with language.
“It was like whenever they talked they were reciting poetry” senior Caleb Dreschel said.
If you missed the Over the Rhine concert on campus, they are playing two shows over the weekend in Seattle at the Triple Door. Tickets are $35 each.