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I dropped in on the Elliott Smith tribute at the Bottle for a little bit on Saturday. It was less exciting than I had hoped, and more crowded with grown-up frat boys than I would ever have guessed.
The upside of the show was that I got into a conversation about Elliott Smith bootlegs with one of my friends, and he told me that there was a decent audience-recording of a Smith solo set at the Bottle from right around the time of Figure 8‘s original release. You can find it here. The recording quality is indeed decent—although if you want to download, hit up the FLAC links instead of the low-bitrate MP3s—and the performance is pretty excellent. In fact, the rendition of “Independence Day” is the best I’ve ever heard. Chicago bonus: During “St. Ides Heaven” then-Chicagoan Rebecca Gates steps up to handle backing vocals.