I rolled into Liberty Hall at about 9:05, which provided the perfect amount of time to get a Free State Beer before the show started.
Beach House went on around 9:15, and Liberty Hall—although not at its 1000 person capacity- was pretty packed. And surprisingly, the audience was more versatile than I expected…not just a bunch of hipsters.
The band opened the show with Wild, the second song off their latest album, Bloom.
Although singer/pianist Victoria Legrand does have a strong, full voice, it wasn’t until the third song, Norway, from their 2010 album, Teen Dream, that the band really took command of the audience.
In fact, the girl behind me didn’t make it that long. I overheard her friend ask how she liked it and she replied, “I mean, I’m not into it. It sounds just like the album—all of their sounds are prerecorded and being played from a synthesizer right there on stage.”
Now, this wasn’t 100% true, but it was clear in many instances.
I mean, the band is described as a "dream-pop duo" so I guess you’d kind of expect some sort of synthetic and pre-recorded sounds. And a lot of their songs do sound surprisingly similar, though still interesting for the most part.
For the rest of the show, the band weaved in and out of their most recent albums, playing songs from each. Fans seemed to appreciate the older songs, like Used to Be and Take Care.
Guitarist Alex Scally did an amazing job, too, controlling some beats with pedals while simultaneously playing his Stratocaster. It was easy to miss that subtlety, though, and become distracted by the strategically choreographed lights and Legrand’s ever-moving, long mane of hair which she couldn’t seem to keep out of her face.
But they did have witty stage banter, telling the mesmerized audience: “It’s ok if you want to dance, we won’t tell your judgey friends.”
Hey, all my judgey friends were already there to witness my awkward swaying, so…
The band ended their show with a 2-song encore, where they immediately re-entered the stage and played 10 Mile Stereo and Irene, one of my favorite songs of the night that left the audience with the droning lyrics, “It’s a strange paradise,” repeating in their minds.
It is indeed.
Used to Be
10 Mile Stereo