Best Single Set:
Chuck Prophet at the Ale House, 11 p.m. Friday. That the room was about two sizes too small for the crowd—and for the increasingly ambitous scale and scope of Prophet's music—only served to amplify and intensify the glorious performance turned in by Prophet and his four-piece band. While he's always been a compelling live performer, Prophet seems to be stretching beyond himself these days, reaching heights he's never quite hit before. The vocal balance between him and keyboardist Stephanie Finch is precisely on target, while the rest of the crew just keeps driving all the dramatics and dynamics and grooves of Prophet's songs to tighter and trippier end-results. The peak moment: "Let's Do Something Wrong", a mission-statement for breaking the daily grind that had the crowd chanting along by song's end: "Let's do something wrong, let's do something stupid!"