with Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
and Bad Veins
Revolution Live, June 5
Better than: Sneaking out of your parents' house to catch a show.
Tweens and teens donned their best florals, short shorts, and crop tops yesterday afternoon to catch a glimpse of their first rock concert. They hopped in their parents' SUVs and schlepped all the way to "the Revolution" in hopes that they'd have one. They discussed their latest boy/girl disses, how much they didn't study for that math test, and how excited they were to see Two Door Cinema Club and "those two other bands" while waiting in line in front of us. Yes, the show was that early, and yes, the crowd was that young. But Two Door Cinema Club definitely knew how to please us -- no matter what grade we've just finished (24th grade?).
We arrived at Revolution Live a little after 7 p.m. to a massive line of overeager fans. Guys sported their best Two Door Cinema Club T-shirts, while pretty young things had their little hearts set on showing some skin. And the 20- and 30-somethings? Well, they just pretended the younger audience wasn't even there.
Bad Veins took to the stage at 7:30 sharp. A two-man band from Ohio, they mastered guitar, drums, and synths reminiscent of early Killers (you know, when everyone loved them) during their half-hour set and even sported an old-fashioned microphone.They were sweet and sincere, and as the crowd in the pit raised their cell phones instead of lighters, we quickly realized exactly what kind of show we were in for.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah came on around 8:15, and while their Southern country twang was as apparent as ever, they've clearly mellowed out quite a bit since their self-titled debut in 2005. Currently on tour promoting their third album, Hysterical, a lot of the songs felt perfect for a spot on an '80s movie soundtrack. Less high-energy, more let's-just-hang-out, the younger audience tried to relate but rarely lifted their hands, while the more mature set swayed to the interesting combo of harmonica, keyboards, guitars, bass, and drums. Each member rotated instruments too, which made it all the more visually appealing, while powering through more popular ditties like "The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth."
Not to be outdone, Two Door Cinema Club finally appeared on stage a little after 9:30 p.m. to seizure-inducing strobe lights so powerful we needed to physically pull out our shades. Beatles-like hysteria ensued, with so many girls screaming that we're pretty sure some teen boys' hearts were broken last night.
The drums were powerful as red-haired, chambray-donning frontman Alex Trimble charged through hits like "Cigarettes in the Theatre." From the very beginning, security guards walked by, looking for the perps in charge of lighting up the "non-cigarettes" around the minors. Ironic? Just a little.
The boys in the band were definitely dressed like an indie group, sporting their best skinnies, Keds, and plaid, and as the crowd jumped in unison, we spotted a sea of blue "underaged" bracelets raised. New songs like "This Is Moon" were a bit jarring for die-hard fans, as the sound was definitely a bit softer and grown-up. The kids tried to appreciate but found it hard since they couldn't sing along (like they were attempting to with every other song). The oohs and ahhs and trademark riffs were still apparent in the band's newer material, and we could tell how much TDCC really loves the tracks by how many times they decided to go off on solos.
There's definitely something to be said for a band that sounds just like its recorded self. TDCC tried to maintain an almost exact replication at first but slowly started to feel more comfortable, slowing popular tracks like "What You Know" to sound more like an acoustic lullaby -- one we'd never want to fall asleep to, because it's just that catchy.
"We hear you guys like to party in Fort Lauderdale," bassist and co-vocalist Kevin Baird mused. "Are you having a good time? Good." Between plenty of "Cheers!" and adorable little check-ins, TDCC quickly realized they didn't really have to do much elaborate talking to please the crowd last night.
TDCC is no different from your standard indie pop band, except for one defining factor: its drummer. The clear star of the evening, Benjamin Thompson (only a touring member) made sure his instrument of choice was louder and more powerful than the rest of the band's, and at times, it almost felt like he was charging us into some sort of victory. He started the set with help (think: two drummers, one kit), but showcased his strengths with plenty of solos while knowing when to just shut the eff up and let Trimble showcase his vocal abilities.
Only 12 songs in a set is not nearly enough (even for a band that has only a little less than 20 in its entire catalog), but as the sold-out crowd cheered "One more song!" in unison, glowstick fingers raised, pink glittery cell phones propped up, and Trimble and company gave them exactly what they wanted: a three-song encore worth remembering before curfew.
Personal bias: I have a soft spot for rock pop that's apparently meant for a younger audience.
The crowd: Tweens, teens, their parents, confused 20- and 30-somethings.
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Overheard in the crowd: In reference to CYHSY: "This band is cute, but I just wanna jump around. I need more cardio in my life."
By the way: Bad Veins frontman Benjamin Davis was totally signing autographs and watching the show right next to us. How cute is that?!
Two Door Cinema Club's Setlist:
"Cigarettes in the Theatre"
"Do you want it all"
"This is the life"
"Something good can work"
"You're not stubborn"
"This is moon"
"Eat that up, it's good for you"
"What you know"
"Come Back Home"
"I Can Talk"