Live Review: Glass Animals at Aragon Ballroom

Glass Animals brought dance moves, pineapples, and an energetic performance to Chicago’s Aragon Ballroom last week


New York’s singer songwriter Amber Mark warmed up the sold out crowd with her lively pop and R&B fused tunes. Performing a 30 minute set composed mainly of songs off her debut EP, called 3:33AM, Mark showed off her powerful vocals while exuding a carefree and fun attitude.

Glass Animals took the fully decked out stage next, stocked with a pineapple disco ball, palm trees, and a prop TV. Hitting the stage in a blaze of energy, the British indie rockers commanded the crowd’s attention and had them all echoing back the words of songs from their sophomore album How To Be A Human Being. The exuberant and dynamic set included the entirety of the band’s second album, as well as a few of their most popular tracks, like “Black Mambo”  and “Gooey,” from their debut album ZABA. During the latter, Glass Animals’ frontman Dave Bayley jumped off the stage to bring his signature dance moves directly to the crowd. Between each song, the devoted audience erupted in nearly deafening applause and cheers, and Bayley never stopped expressing the band’s gratitude.  The memorable performance wrapped up just before 10PM, the crowd filing out of the ballroom with infectious smiles on their faces.

If you missed out on the show, check out our gallery of Amber Mark and Glass Animals below!

Check out the rest of Glass Animals’ tour dates here, and grab your copy of How To Be A Human Being on vinyl on the webstore, or in the shop!


 

This article was originally posted on ANCHR Magazine

Live Review: King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard and Mild High Club at Lincoln Hall

Mild High Club and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard made a perfect pairing for a double header of sold out shows at Chicago’s Lincoln Hall. The two groups created an IRL experience of “Sketches of Brunswick East” for the first time. 


Mild High Club took the stage shortly after 8PM on Monday for a hometown show that featured collaborations and additional layers that brought their recorded music to life. Kicking off the collaborations, vocalist Quinn Tsan joined the group to sing alongside lead singer and frontman Alex Brettin. Shortly after Tsan left the stage to a swooping round of applause, the band added in a saxophonist for a few songs, followed by a brief guest appearance of Adam LP from new Chicago outfit wavy id. While both Sunday and Monday night’s set included popular songs like “Windowpane” and “Tessellation,” Brettin and his bandmates switched up the order of their set each nice to make their show even more dynamic. The combination of guest appearances, a refreshed setlist, and a trippy light show made for an all encompassing and captivating performance from Mild High Club.

Australian psych rockers King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard hit the stage next with a blaze of guitar jams and pacing rhythms that never slowed down, thanks in large part to their two drummers. The seven piece group completely filled out the humble stage at the 500 capacity venue, and the crowd completely packed in to be as close as possible to stage. From the second the super group opened up with “Some Context” from their first album of 2017, Murder of the Universe, the audience and King Gizzard reciprocated one another’s energy levels. While frontman Stu MacKenzie would flip the top half of his body upside down, flail his guitar around, or flash his tongue to the crowd, the audience would thrash around in the mosh pit, which amplified in intensity as the 90 minute set progressed. The set spanned the course of several of King Gizzard’s albums, but the crowd got the rowdiest during “Rattlesnake” from Flying Microtonal Banana and “Gamma Knife” from Nonagon Infinity. At some points, a few audience members attempted to crowd surf (before being stopped by venue security). Nonetheless, the spirit of the crowd clung to the brim, never dipping as the ambitious Aussies kept up their signature pulsating pace. Just as King Gizzard’s set approached the finish line, they invited Alex and Mat of Mild High Club to join them on the stage to perform some of their collaborative album Sketches of Brunswick East, which made the stage even tighter than it already had been. The two groups performed the jazz-tinged “Countdown” and “Rolling Stoned” together before they all left the stage to a grateful and awestruck audience.


Photo Gallery of Mild High Club and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard

 

 


Check out all of our King Gizzard stock on the webstore here, or head into the store to pick up one (or a few) of their many albums!

 


This article was originally posted on ANCHR Magazine

LIVE: Bastille Put on a Nostalgic Last Wild, Wild World Tour Show

Bastille took over The Fillmore in Philadelphia last Thursday night to play the last headline show of their sophomore album’s saga.


Kicking things off on the last night of the Wild, Wild World Tour, the Los Angeles duo Frenship took over the Fillmore stage for 45 minutes. Getting by with a little help from their friends in their live band, James Sunderland and Brett Hite performed popular songs like “Carpet” and “Run Wild” from their Truce EP. One of the set’s highlights included their performance of the viral track “Capsize,” which has racked up almost 400 million Spotify streams and features vocalist and songwriter Emily Warren on the studio version. Live, Frenship’s keyboardist and vocalist Celeste steps in to sing Warren’s parts, but the band also had the audience singing along to the catchy chorus as well. The real highlight of the set happened when Bastille crashed the stage during Frenship’s last song “1000 Nights,” which only got the audience more excited for the show that would follow.

 

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James Sunderland and Brett Hite of Frenship

Thirty minutes later, the house lights dimmed, stage lights flickered, and the four members of Bastille made their way onto stage, accompanied by live band member Charlie Barnes. As the opening chords of the brassy and bassy “Send Them Off!” rang out into the Philadelphia venue, cheers erupted from the crowd and lead singer Dan Smith began to sing the lyrics that allude to Shakespeare’s Othello. The set took a brief retrospective turn when the band performed “Laura Palmer” off their debut album, which seems pointedly apt again with the reboot of David Lynch’s cult classic TV show Twin Peaks. Before the bright lights on the stage dimmed to place the spotlight on Smith and his keyboard where he would sing the ironically sombre song “Overjoyed” from the debut album, Smith took a break to call attention to some of the signs held up by fans on the barricade. Bringing one on stage that read “I Totaled My Car Driving Up From DC To Be Here,” Smith asked the fan what had happened, holding out the microphone for her to share her story. He then selected a sign that read “Don’t Blame Me, I Worked 4 Hillary,” which alluded to the band’s song “Blame” and their politically driven song “The Currents,” which cleverly digs at Donald Trump. After the quick detour of “sign related stories,” as Smith called them, the show continued with Smith slightly struggling during “Overjoyed” due to vocal stress and sound issues. Although he remained visibly conscious of his vocals and sound levels during the performance, he pushed through and still delivered the sweeping range required for the song.

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Frontman Dan Smith with one of their fan’s signs

 

The remainder of the set weaved in and out of older tunes and newer ones from Wild World, which just hit its first birthday on September 9th. The fourth song of the night, “Warmth,” acts as a title track almost, with its lyrics containing “Hold me in this wild, wild world” during the chorus. Another true Bastille show staple, Smith left the stage to go sing and dance with the Fillmore audience during their single “Flaws,” another throwback to their first album. While the set contained a mix of Wild World and Bad Blood cuts, the band also sprinkled in a few other surprises. They induced 1990’s nostalgia when they performed their popular mashup cover titled “Of The Night,” which combines “Rhythm of the Night” and “Rhythm is a Dancer” and got the crowd jumping up and down with Smith yet again. “Of The Night” was first released as part of the band’s illegal mixtape called Other People’s Heartache, which contained uncleared samples and cover songs…so the only place to hear these songs are now live or in the deep dark corners of the internet.

 

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Bastille also brought back “The Draw” from their extended album All This Bad Blood, which almost acts as album 1.5, as it contains a full album of never before released songs that came out between the two official full lengths. The biggest nostalgic surprise, however, came when Smith and co performed a beautifully rearranged version of their 2014 single “Bad_News,” which was released both independently as a music video and as a remix on their mixtape entitled VS. (Other People’s Heartache Pt. III). This mixtape containing collaborations with the likes of Haim, Rationale, Lizzo and more is actually legal and can be streamed or purchased on all major platforms. Speaking of collaboration, the set ended with the group’s massive hit “Pompeii,” and this time the tables turned when Frenship crashed the stage to lend some help with the “eh-ohs” and drumming. The band left the stage to a venue ringing with applause and echoing eh-ohs.

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The 19-track setlist did not include Bastille’s latest single “Glory” or another “Wild, Wild World Tour” setlist staple “Lethargy,” probably due to Smith’s vocal strain, but they still managed to fill up 90 minutes and deliver a well-rounded show that contained layers from each saga of Bastille’s career to date. Smith told the crowd they’ll be returning to The States soon with new music, which will include another one of their mixtapes and a new LP within a year’s time. As Bastille’s musical catalog continues to grow, their sound will only grow more diverse and multifaceted, and we can’t wait to hear what they release next.


Check out the full photo gallery of the show below

 

Can’t enough Bastille? Head to the shop to pick up their full version of Wild World or snag it from the webstore here



This article was originally posted on ANCHR Magazine

This past Friday night at Schubas Tavern, Marika Hackman and The Big Moon created an IRL experience of Hackman’s latest album I’m Not Your Man. Released on June 2nd, the sophomore album from Hackman marks a departure and transformation for the formerly folk artist. Boosting blunt lyrics, lighter melodies, and a lax, carefree recording style, I’m Not Your Man takes listeners through a 15-song journey, featuring The Big Moon as the backing band for the majority of them. Before The Big Moon pulled their second shift of the evening, backing Hackman at the Lakeview venue, they had performed their own 45 minute set, which carried the same carefree mood of friendship that comes across on their recordings. In addition to songs from their debut album Love in the 4th Dimension, the group also performed a cover of “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” Between songs, the band kept the crowd laughing with a bit of sarcasm and banter, but the standout moment of their set occurred during their song “Bonfire.” Front woman Juliette (Jules) Jackson left the stage and abandoned her guitar to sing the song with the crowd.

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Jules from The Big Moon ventures out into the crowd

The same banter and laughter only amplified when Hackman joined The Big Moon, but the focus of the night remained on the effortless musicianship displayed between the friends. The songs from I’m Not Your Man translated beautifully in the live sense, seeing as most of the album had actually been tracked live, with a minimal use of overdubs. Hackman’s hourlong set focused on the new album, with a couple of older tunes like “Cinnamon” and “Ophelia” sprinkled in. The direct, honest lyrics of tracks like “My Lover Cindy” and “Violet” had the crowd captivated and wrapped around Hackman’s finger. Prior to performing the latter, Hackman introduced “Violet” as a sexy song, encouraging the crowd to kiss their dates (only with consent) if they were feeling it. “Gina’s World” also stood out during the 11-song set, with its hauntingly heavy guitar riffs and striking harmonies, which echoed beautifully throughout the venue. Just before the set wrapped up with the dreamy “BlahBlahBlah,” Hackman and The Big Moon performed the lead single from I’m Not Your Man, Boyfriend.” The playful tune teased the light-hearted reinvention of Hackman before the release of the album, and it definitely acted as a highlight of the live show.

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Marika Hackman singing her direct and honest lyrics

More photos from the show 

Want more Marika? You can grab the physical album of I’m Not Your Man at the shop, or order it from the Shuga webstore here.


This article was originally posted on ANCHR Magazine.