I’m tempted to review this show in a single sentence, then apologize because I have to pay by the word. But I won’t, because I’m not a jerk and more importantly, because Sylvan Esso is amazing and they deserve better.
If you don’t know them, Sylvan Esso is an electropop duo, consisting of singer Amelia Meath and producer Nick Sanborn. They combine Meath’s sharp, boisterous vocals with a variety of electronic backing, from crunching bass-lines to candy-sweet pop and land in a pleasant and addictive tangle of sound.
A weekend-sized crowd descended on First Ave for a midweek Wednesday show rowdy and ready to party. Apparently the attendees of the 10,000 Sounds Festival this past July, which was on the heels of their network TV debut on the Jimmy Fallon Show. Needless to say, things are going well for them, and that’s great because they’ve earned it.
It’s fun to catch shows like these, where it’s their first time on a stage this size, with the history that First Ave has, and watch them stare out in disbelief at the size of the crowd. Meath paused to speak between nearly every song, her words drowned out by the enthusiastic cheers of the audience. At one point she said this was their first headlining tour, and that it was overwhelming to have so many people come out to see them.
The pair rocketed through all ten songs of their self-titled LP with aplomb, and perhaps a little too quickly. Maybe ten minutes shy of an hour into their set, they announced they were done, thanked the crowd and stepped off-stage. The audience only got louder the longer they stayed off, and right when the noise seemed at it’s peak, they popped back up to play a couple more songs.
One was a cover of “The Cosmos” by Porches. (hear both the cover and the original over on Stereogum) and an unreleased track before enthusiastically thanking the crowd one last time. They took it all in, taking a mental snapshot and left the stage. This time, it was for good.
I was happy with the songs, the sound and everything about the show, except for it’s length. I feel like if you’re going to embark on a headlining tour, that you may want to pad your setlists with a couple covers, or work on some additional material while on the road. I don’t feel like that’s too much to ask. Otherwise, I feel like a junkie standing there, wanting just one more. Just one more song.
I’d love to share photos, but I didn’t bring my camera, and I’ll spare you the grainy concert photos taken with a phone. But I won’t spare you the time lapse I shot on the balcony using Hyperlapse, which is something I’ll be using a lot at upcoming shows.