Orville Peck – The Armory – Minneapolis, MN -June 11th, 2024

Orville Peck with Durand Jones and Debbii Dawson – The Armory – Minneapolis, MN June 11, 2024

Orville Peck Review and photos by Kate Klaus

Orville Peck’s “Stampede” Tour made its way through Minneapolis on June 11.  It was a night of diverse country and showy performances and musicality.  It was accentuated by themes of inclusion, supportiveness, and positivity.

Debbii Dawson began the night, taking the stage looking humble and modest.  She had just an acoustic guitar in hand, and almost in awe of the large crowd before her.  However, the minute she opened her mouth with a quip “Hello, I’m Orville Peck”.  This led to a roar of laughter to the crowd.  She demonstrated an engaging stage presence with an air of comedy mixed in.  This made an immediate connection to the audience – before she had even started singing.  With a mix of country, pop, and folk styles, she has elegantly clean vocals and a beautifully simple musicality.  It was enchanting.

Duran Jones was the next performer, entering the stage with a brilliant saxophone solo.  This immediately set the stage for a vibrant performance.  While not with his more well-known band, The Indications, he was joined by a talented group of musicians.  They then performed an animated set.  Originally from Louisiana, Jones’s music was a fusion of jazz and southern style.  It was combined with his energetic dance moves, microphone spinning, and vulnerable connection to the audience. With a Pride Month performance that he recognized as only the second time he had been openly and publicly celebrating.

Orville Peck culminated the night, entering the stage with his trademark glam-cowboy attire.  Complete with his trademark mask and quiet air of anonymity, but with a radiating smile that instantly warmed the crowd. It felt like an intimate show with friends.  He opened with “Big Sky”.  His crooning classic-style country vocals filled the Armory with thick warm tones and huge emotion.  His style is a fascinating juxtaposition of old-style country music with contemporary energy of inclusivity and positivity.  As a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, he provides queer visibility for and representation in a genre more traditionally focused.

His performance exhibited both strength and inspiration as well as a deep vulnerability, touching on his departure from touring last year to address some deep mental health concerns.  During “Roses are Falling”, he threw roses out to various members of the crowd, and later dedicated a song to a truck driver in the crowd.  The packed crowd and the Armory was certainly treated to a wonderful evening of beautiful music, community, and was a strong representation for inclusivity in the country music genre.