A Pop Music Paradise: Sylvan Esso Fills Town Ballroom with Color, Fans, and Musical Bliss
>> Suzi Analogue got a packed crowd on their feet, while Sylvan Esso eagerly kept them there as fans anxiously anticipated which song might come next in a lengthy set, filled with gorgeous lights, crisp pop sound, and an extremely vibrant performance.
Suzi’s DJing was robust, as she played a variety of music, allowing the crowd to fill in and fall into a trance that Sylvan Esso would rock them out of in due time. Her bright red shades and colorful attire fit her upbeat song selection as she bopped back and forth, dancing and moving with fervor throughout her set. Suzi brought her energy with full force for a solid 45-minute set, but the crowd wasn’t there for a DJ set; they were there for Sylvan Esso, and at times it showed, barely putting a damper on fan’s spirits though bringing some lulls into their collective energy.
After a quick change over, the lights dimmed and flashes of lights began backlighting keyboardist Nick Sanborn, half of the duo the makes of Sylvan Esso, as he began playing, the crowd reaching ecstatic heights when Amelia Meath danced onto stage, sporting a tank top, jeans, and some thick leopard print platform boots. The group started their set rather dark, with lights trickling in at times or flooding the stage with bits of green, red and purple. The light was poppy, like the band’s music: a distinct blend of crisp production, complex lyrics, and vocals packed with conviction. As Amelia danced around the stage and sang, Nick’s fingers rarely got any relief, constantly creating toons as if part of an elaborate melodic stream of consciousness, stringing songs together. The band’s pop sound and dazzling light show are almost a facade for the deep lyrics lingering beneath, tackling the complexities of life, and at times, the tumultuous socio-political landscape that exists in the world today, yet presented as a harmonious package that was magnificent to behold. As their set continued, through “Could I Be,” “Hey Mami,” and “Coffee,” the vocals grew louder, the lights brighter, and the crowd more lively. Clapping, swaying their arms and outright cheering mid songs at times as Sylvan Esso transformed Town Ballroom into a pop music paradise. As if in the blink of an eye, two musicians appeared, jammed out with a sold-out audience, and in another blink, it was over: a near perfect show for a band well into its adolescence with the stage presence of seasoned veterans.<<