This year has been a great year for shows at the Wesleyan. These were our favorites!
Hop Along @ Music House - Allison, Kelsey and Alex
4/15 was by far one of the most eventful days of the year, with Zonker Harris Day and a performance from Philly indie-folk rock band Hop Along all within the span of 24 hours. The venue was not as packed as one would expect for a well-known act like Hop Along (probably due to a significant amount of people still recovering from the ~excitement~ of Zonker), but the crowd remained ecstatic, and being able to scream the lyrics to “Tibetan Pop Stars” while 2 feet away from Frances Quinlan will remain one of The Coolest Things we’ve done at Wesleyan.
Delicate Steve @ Music House - Adam
Delicate Steve’s show (his third time playing here) was a clear standout. The band brought a unique and zany but charged performance, bolstered by especially professional sound. In the fairly modest Music House crowd, there was a surprisingly electrifying energy present. Steve’s guitar playing carries the unique ability to move audiences, and it showed when handfuls of us sweaty college students were singing along with his lines. My personal highlight was his encore medley, which included instrumental guitar-based covers of “Tutti Frutti” and “My Generation.”
Evan from Pinegrove @ Psi U - Henry
On April 14th, Evan Stephens Hall of Montclair indie-rock band Pinegrove played an intimate acoustic solo set at Psi U. After a noisy beginning and subsequent thinning of the crowd, typical of big name shows at Wes, Evan performed for a silently seated audience. In addition to the quieter songs from 2016’s Cardinal (which happens to be my AOTY), Evan took requests and played some older hits like “Angelina” and “Recycling.” He finished with new material, playing short songs reminiscent of Frankie Cosmos and Alex G, two of his self-proclaimed influences.
Gootype Bosshaviours @ Earth House - Meg
May 4th marked a rare but beautiful occurrence - BOSSY, Girltype Behaviors, and Goo came together for a Thursday concert. There’s nothing like starting your weekend early, and the merging of three on-campus rockers on one (rogue) night was an exciting end to a strong year of on-campus music. All three bands are recent (or brand spankin’ new) to the Wesleyan scene, and have really hit their stride this spring. The uniqueness of the mini-set format of this unscheduled show was only exaggerated by the barging-in of P-Safe after an amazing drum solo by Shea of Girltype Behaviors. Highlights include Goo’s control over musical dynamics (in both their originals and in a stand-out cover of “Blister in the Sun”), singing along to BOSSY’s “Earl,” and the energy and stage presence of Girltype Behaviors’ vocalist May Klug, who channels the sound of 80s rockers like Mission of Burma. It made me proud to be a female musician at Wes. And to top it off, it happened in debatably the best small concert venue on campus.
Frankie Cosmos @ Music House
On 12/3, Frankie Cosmos, the lo-fi indie-pop project of Greta Kline, played an unforgettable show at Music House. We got the chance to interview the band and talk about their 2016 album Next Thing before they took the stage to play for an enthusiastic audience. Although the lack of stage and the high noise level of the crowd made it difficult for all to enjoy the show, it was amazing to have Frankie Cosmos play a live performance at Wesleyan, and we hope that they wouldn’t be opposed to playing here again in the future.
Video Age @ Art House
Following the events of 4/20, New Orleans new wave indie rock band Video Age came to play a fun and energetic show at Art House. The event, organized and hosted by Aural Wes’ own Manny Unger, attracted a huge crowd and was extremely successful. There was 80’s techno nostalgia, eclectic dancing, and free pizza from Mondo - what more could you want for an ideal night?
Tonstartssbandht @ Art House
Florida/New York rock duo Tonstartssbandht, composed of brothers Andy (on guitar) and Edwin (on drums) White, played a raw and soulful show at Art House on the first weekend back from winter break, thus kicking off the start of second semester on an incredible note. With their unique blend of vocal harmonies and psychedelic melodies, Tonstartssbandht left the entire crowd wanting more and wondering how exactly to pronounce their band name (TAHN-starts-bandit).