Somehow, the universe blessed me and I got a ticket to Alt 98.7's Christmas Series show at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles last night. I jumped at the tickets weeks ago since I missed CHVRCHES' last LA show at the Shrine Auditorium, and I was also a huge fan of Chris Baio from Vampire Weekend's solo debut, The Names. The show was everything I hoped it would be.
I got to the venue around 7:20, 40 minutes before doors opened, and there was already a line wrapping around the block. People love Chvrches. These tickets sold out almost instantly, and I'm still shocked that I managed to get one. Once they let us in, my brother and I staked out a spot close to the front of the stage.
Baio was fantastic live, better than his studio recordings I think. It definitely had to do with the groove that he brought to the stage. Not only do his songs have great beats and catchy guitar riffs, but his signature dance move (check it out in his video for "Sister of Pearl") made everyone want to dance along. Although I was one of the only ones who knew (at least some of) his songs, the crowd seemed to really like the set, and he was a great choice to open for CHVRCHES. I'd describe him as a hybrid between Vampire Weekend and Jamie xx - if you like either of those artists, check out his music!
CHVRCHES was everything I'd hoped them to be. The last time I saw them live was November 2014, so it's been a while, and they did not disappoint. Although they didn't play one of my favorite songs, "Lungs," after a fan screamed a request for it, they went on to joke about how they hadn't rehearsed it and didn't really even remember how to play it. Their setlist had a great mix of songs from their debut, The Bones of What You Believe, and their recent Sophomore album, Every Open Eye. Highlights included "Under The Tide," "Empty Threat," "Tether," and "Clearest Blue." The encore started out with the somber synth ballad "Afterglow" (one of my favorite songs of the year), and the theatre came to a haunting silence as everyone got super emotional - it's a beautiful song, and Lauren's voice gave me chills. CHVRCHES finished up with "The Mother We Share," and I smiled like an idiot, finally getting a relief from the stress of school and college applications.
All I can say is if CHVRCHES (or Baio!!!) is playing a show near you in the future, get tickets.