Last night, Waxahatchee gave me cause to turn my attention north and head to Gainesville to catch Katie Crutchfield's normally solo project as a full band for the first time, touring on Ivy Tripp, which dropped on Merge just this month.
As expected, hearing Katie and sister Allison Crutchfield harmonizing on new tracks live was worth the trip alone, both stunning singers and this night on their distinct A games. The enveloping experience of the fuller sound (thanks to the added band) easily turned the Wooly into a party - which got started much sooner thanks to Orlando openers Wet Nurse, who drew a scattered crowd into a bobbing, dance-y blob.
If you're sleeping on Ivy Tripp, its moody self reflections are paced to perfection and live, Waxahatchee recreated that magic just as masterfully. What a treat.
Pro tip: If you're taking I-75 Northbound to Gainesville for a show or day trip in the future, get off 10 miles early at exit 374 and take the much more scenic Williston Road the rest of the way to the college town. It winds directly through Paynes Prairie, and if you've got some spare time like I did yesterday, it begs you to pause at the directly off-road Paynes Prairie Ecopassage, where you can walk out on the pier and look out over the prairie. On my visit, there was a crazy fog that rolled quickly over the land, and I spotted hawks and brown bunnies. There also happened to be a medium-sized gator directly under the pier, and to my frustration, I saw he was laying low in a swampy pile of discarded water bottles, coffee cups, Red Bulls and various other trash. (Gross, Alachua County.) You can see a few photos from Paynes Prairie, including a few of garbage gator, at the end of the gallery. - Ashley Belanger
Related: Worth the Drive: Waxahatchee's in Gainesville tonight SXSW 2015: The Loud, the Quiet and the Mind-Blowing (plus where to catch stand-out acts in Florida soon) VIDEO: Orlando punks Wet Nurse on Off the Avenue Swearin defies genre and gender roles with rousing, punk-tinged rock