My sweat mixed with drops from the leaky air conditioner on Saturday night at Cat's Cradle. Because the show I was attending had sold out weeks in advance, the audience was pressed tightly against each other despite the heat.
“As a musician you dream of playing sweaty shows," Paul Klein, the frontman for LANY, said. “Congratulations, Carrboro, this is the sweatiest."
Indie pop trio LANY took the stage at Cat’s Cradle this weekend and performed for a worshiping crowd. Although I enjoy their music, hearing them live disappointed me after listening to their carefully crafted studio releases.
If you haven’t heard of LANY before, you probably will soon. With almost 7 million monthly listeners on Spotify and sold-out crowds almost everywhere they go, the band's fame has increased dramatically in the last year. Tickets for the Carrboro concert resold for five times their original price.
“(This show is) the smallest on our tour, but there’s something so special about this place,” said Klein.
Klein leads the electronic trio on keyboard and vocals, Jake Gloss plays drums and synth and Les Priest takes guitar and backup vocals. Their music channels chill beats, new wave influences and moody west coast sounds. Klein, who has modeled for brands such as Prada, amplifies their hip vibe with his messy-hair-don’t-care aesthetic.
What makes the group unique is their ability to blend subtle layers of electronic sounds with vocals to create an ambient finished product. But when they perform live, LANY loses their understated touch and plays more like a fledgling alternative rock band.
Even if I wasn’t into their first sets, the crowd certainly was. The exuberant fan base waved roses above their heads during certain numbers. One member of the crowd threw pancakes on the stage during the song "Pancakes."
The group came to Cat’s Cradle last year. Julia Quintavalle, a first-year who had gone to their concert in Carrboro last year, felt that this year’s performance was more high-key.
“Live, you feel more emotion in their words,” said Quintavalle.
Halfway through the show, LANY slowed it down for “Current Location” with a soulful outpouring featuring an upright piano.
The last sets were my favorites of the evening. “Super Far” is a fast paced number with a danceable beat that didn’t lose its heart played live. “ILYSB” is one of their most famous songs, so it made sense that their performance of it was solid and well-rehearsed.
Opener Dagny surprised me with their talent. The upbeat alt-pop group energetically sang and danced on stage in matching white jumpsuits.
As LANY rises in popularity, their ticket prices will likely continue to soar. Unless you deeply want to see the artists themselves or are a dedicated fan, you might be better off listening to them at home.
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