Salem Civic Center has been loud in recent days. Slayer headlined a quadruple bill of metal and progressive rock a week ago. Chris Janson and Clare Dunn, three nights later, put on a country show that had a big dose of rock volume.
Wednesday night’s fare should be a good deal quieter, but no less substantial.
Mandolin Orange, an Americana/folk act with a growing national profile, headlines the venue. The concert starts at 6:30 p.m. with punk-inflected folk/blues performer Sunny War.
The Chapel Hill, North Carolina, duo of Andrew Marlin and Emily Frantz has been a regular in Western Virginia over the past few years. Mandolin Orange played Red Wing Roots, at Mount Solon, in July. In June 2018, the act headlined Lexington’s Lime Kiln Theater. 2017 gigs included Red Wing Roots; Martinsville’s Rooster Walk; Harvester Performance Center, in Rocky Mount; and Abingdon’s January Jams. Two years prior, the two opened for Kathleen Edwards at the old Kirk Avenue Music Hall.
These days, on the power of February release “Tides of a Teardrop,” Mandolin Orange has sold out Nashville, Tennessee’s Ryman Auditorium twice and performed in front of 10,000 at San Francisco’s vaunted Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, according to band publicity.
Sydney Lyndella Ward, aka Sunny War, combines a deeply blues-influenced, finger-picked guitar style with a vocal that is all bittersweet lilt. She’s worth showing up early.