PHOENIX — Valley Bar’s retro interior design was the perfect setting for psychedelic rock band Post Animal’s entrancing show on Sunday, July 23. Their music and the atmosphere of the rain outside were the perfect combination for a show that made the crowd exude happiness and dance throughout the entire set.
The show was opened by Femny and Stef Chura. Stef Chura had a female lead singer /guitarist, as well as a female bassist. Their music echoed underground vibes, and it had a reminiscent sound of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
When Post Animal came on stage, they began their set with an electrifying new song. The crowd was quickly out of their seats to dance, and filled up the previously barren space by the stage. “Swamp Fruit”, the next song, brought ambiance that made for the perfect transition.
Jake Hirshland (Guitarist/Keyboardist/Vocalist) bolstered the crowd as he complimented their presence saying, “Beautiful, Phoenix, Arizona!”. There’s always something special about hearing a band say the name of your hometown.
The entrancing guitar in the following song, “Alabaster”, took you somewhere else; it’s truly a psychedelic must-hear! The crowd was feeling the band’s energy, and head banging was in full swing.
The band played fan favorites, including “When I Get Home”. After Hirshland let the crowd know they had nowhere to sleep that night and were looking to crash at someone’s place, Javi Reyes (Guitarist) said, “Let’s talk!”.
They ended their set with another new song. You could feel the high energy of the crowd the from beginning to the end of Post Animal’s set.
Post Animal brings a modern touch to classic psychedelic rock with heavy drums and powerful guitar solos. Each member plays their role perfectly as they synchronize with each other. Their music is just as good live as it is on their records, with the added bonus of an impressive energy worth the experience. Undeniably, they are a band you will want to listen to and make sure to come out to see next time they are in Phoenix!
Post Animal burst onto the scene in 2015 with their album Perform the Most Curious Water Activities. Ever since then, they have been working hard releasing more music including their psychedelic hit, “When I Get Home”. “Special Moment” is their latest release. The psychedelic-rock band hails from Chicago and consists of Dalton Allison, Jake Hirshland, Joe Keery, Javi Reyes, Wesley Toledo and Matt Williams.
Dalton Allison (Vocalist/Bassist) tells us more about the band, music, tour, influences and more in their email interview below…
What brought Post Animal together, and how long has the band existed?
Originally Matt, Jake and I all met in Chicago through mutual friends back in 2015. We were lucky enough to have all ended up being in Chicago at the right place and the right time and just kept adding onto ourselves when we found somebody who we loved playing with.
What influenced the band name? Were there other choices before ‘Post Animal’ became the final one?
I’m sure we had a bunch of names being thrown around before but Jake used ‘Post Animal’ to describe an idea that came out of a book a friend was reading while we were hanging at his family’s farm house and we never felt a need to change it since.
If you could describe your music in one word, what would it be?
You just started your current headlining tour on June 1st. What aspect of the tour are you most excited about?
I think we’re all excited to travel across the USA and into parts of Canada. There are a lot of places on this tour that none of us have ever been.
What are your favorite songs to perform? Is there a certain lyric from any of your songs that is especially meaningful to you?
I think we all really like to play the newer songs because the writing has been much more collaborative, but a lot of the lyrics are more individually specific in a vague way, if that makes sense, so I’m not sure if there are any choice lyrics. We all love to back each other up though so even if it doesn’t mean much to us individually the connection is still there as a group.
Having played in Tucson, was playing in Arizona different than playing anywhere else?
At this point in time we’ve only played in Tucson but from what we’ve seen people are very nice and hospitable. We’re very lucky to get the opportunity to come back and are ready to rock with everyone again.
Is there anything about working in the music industry that caught you by surprise?
We still have a lot to learn about all this so pretty much everything at this point is a surprise. There are a lot of things that are going on behind the scenes that we never really knew about so we’re very lucky to have friends that are guiding us along the way.
With your guitarist Joe Keery playing the role of Steve Harrington in Stranger Things, how did the success of the TV series affect the band?
The series has affected the band in a very positive way and we’re thankful for all the support we have gotten from people who were introduced to our music by his role in the show.
What past and current artists/bands inspire you?
Between all of us there are a lot of different influences but I think some of the shared are: The Beatles, Black Sabbath, Stevie Wonder, Ty Segall/Fuzz, Pond, King Gizz, Oh Sees, The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Metallica, Kendrick Lamar, Frank Ocean, Heart,
She’s been a best friend of ours even before the band and we’ve always been wowed by her art. She has a real unique art style and we can just throw an idea at her and it comes out as a masterpiece. She’s done all of our album and merch artwork so far and we couldn’t be happier with her work.
What aspects of life influence your music the most?
I think emotions are definitely the cornerstone of music. The way that feelings evolve depending on your current state and the way that they change with personal growth and experimentation has been the biggest influence on most of our music. That being said, we definitely aren’t trying to take ourselves too seriously and are glad that we get to use our band as an outlet.
What is your favorite part of the music process and why? (i.e songwriting, recording, touring, performing, etc.)
We all love writing and recording but I don’t think anything quite tops performing live to a responsive crowd. There is something special about all standing on a stage together and plucking, yelling, and banging at the same time while people watch.
What would the ultimate success for Post Animal look like to you?
I think all we really want out of the band is the opportunity to travel and perform for people. We are humbled by the opportunities we’ve had so far, so if we could make a living out of it on any scale that would be more than we could have ever hoped for. Playing the festival circuit would be a dream.
What do you plan to do after the tour is over?
We have a new album we’re trying to get released sometime this fall and then we have some new ideas we’re ready to try out for some new material after that. I think we’ll take a small break at the end of the summer to cool off but we’re definitely excited to keep things going and try to make the most of the opportunities we’re getting.
TEMPE, Ariz. — Marquee Theatre was heated up by Phoenix’s electric performance on June 13th. Just four days earlier, Phoenix released their sixth studio album Ti Amo and played a few songs from it. It was an unusually cool night (well, as cool as Arizona in June can get), and everyone was lining up to enter into the venue. The atmosphere was filled with excitement as the Marquee was quickly filling up, and looked to be a nearly sold out show.
The venue seemed to be filled with mostly ages 21 and over, as many people had a drink in their hand as they watched the opening act, The Lemon Twigs, perform. The Lemon Twigs owned the stage with their vintage style and sound. Brothers Michael (Lead Vocalist/Guitarist) and Brian (Drummer/Backing Vocalist) D’Addario front the band; with Megan Zeankowski on bass, and Danny Ayala on keyboards/backing vocals. Michael D’Addario commanded the stage with his flare pants and teal shaggy hair. He did numerous high kicks into the air and had a reminiscent look and presence of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards combined. They played a song “Bay Baby”, which gave a 70s feel-good heartbreak vibe. The Lemon Twigs are about to take the music industry by storm, so make sure to check them out!
After a long anticipated wait, Phoenix walked onto stage and the crowd roared with excitement. They started with “Ti Amo”, the title-track of their newly released album Ti Amo. Next came “Lasso” which was met by a pleased crowd that cheered after hearing the first few seconds of the song.
Phoenix played “Entertainment”, and were immersed in an incredible light show during parts of the song. White lights created a curtain cover and our concert photographer, Katherine Amy Vega, described it as being like a holographic effect. The lighting really complemented the electric rock sound. Strobe lights of white, red, blue and yellow filled their set. During some songs, there was a rainbow lighting effect, which may have hinted to Phoenix’s support of the LGBTQ community during Pride Month.
Phoenix seemed to have one of those awe-struck moments as the band paused after playing “Lisztomania”, and smiled at the crowd. During most of the set, balloons with a heart and “Ti Amo” printed on floated through the air amongst the crowd. The whole band put on an energized performance and played their part in creating a music loving atmosphere.
One of the most amazing intimate moments of the show was during the encore when Thomas Mars (Lead Vocalist), climbed off the stage and came to the barricade while singing a stripped-down version of “Countdown” to the crowd as guitarist Christian Mazzalai played on stage.
Phoenix played many fan favorites including “1901” and “Fior Di Latte”. The band took over the stage and created an exhilarating atmosphere. Constant dancing, singing along, cheering and pure happiness filled the venue. It was a concert where you couldn’t help but feel joy because the band projected their happiness and love for music onto the crowd.
To end the show, in the BEST way, Thomas Mars came off stage and joined the crowd in the final song “Ti Amo Di Piu”. He walked through the full crowd with his microphone connected to a glowing red cable that the crowd held up; and he said “Thank you!” over and over again, showing his gratitude to the loving fans. At one point he seemed to be hoistered on someone’s shoulders, possibly a fan, and said “Thank you!” again; followed by crowdsurfing back up to the stage . It was truly a moment no one will forget!
Phoenix put on an amazing performance that rocked the Marquee. Fans will definitely be awaiting the next time they come to Arizona!
MESA, Ariz. — As I approached Mesa Amphitheatre on the hot Arizona day, I saw many of the almost-5,000 people walking in to fill out the sold out show to see The 1975. I was surprised to see the wide range of fans who filled the venue. A very different scene from when I first saw The 1975 at Comerica Theatre in 2014 where the venue was filled mostly teenagers. This shows how much the band has grown in reaching their music to a broader audience.
The first opener, Pale Waves set the indie pop mood for the night. The up-and-coming British indie pop band got the crowd moving with their catchy guitar riffs and the lead singer’s enchanting voice. Pale Waves played a song called “Kiss” which had an ‘80s pop nostalgia vibe that I loved. The strong female presence was amazing with the lead singer and drummer both being girls. With a sound reminiscent to The 1975, it was no wonder they were opening for the band. Pale Waves is definitely a band you’ll want to listen to.
came out next and the crowds excitement roared when they walked out on stage. Lead singer, Sarah Barthel, commanded the stage with her electric voice and 70’s fringe, Stevie Nicks, inspired outfit. Her captivating psychedelic-pop voice hypnotized the crowd. Energized guitar solos, powerful drums and added keyboard for a synthesizer effect got the crowd moving.
The 1975 finally came on, and to say the crowd was excited was an understatement. Pink lights flooded the stage and the beginning of “Love Me” caused the crowd to scream with excitement, myself included. It was the perfect opener, showcasing the new image and sound of the band.
Throughout the set, when the band played songs from their first self-titled album, the lighting fit the aesthetic of a darker mood with darker colors. During the transition to “I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It”, the lighting consisted of neon pink and white. I loved how the band made it a point to showcase the different album styles through lighting. Not to mention how amazing their backdrops were! The 1975 is definitely an aesthetically pleasing band.
Lead singer and frontman, Matty Healy, commanded the stage and engaged the eager fans as he climbed on top of the speaker and lit a cigarette, while singing “A Change of Heart” to mesmerized girls. Before playing “Falling For You” Matty asked for “no phones”, adding, “let’s live right now”. The sheer silence and lack of phones, with the exception of the few fans who couldn’t possibly resist capturing how beautiful Matty looked, made “Falling For You” a unforgettable song. The outside venue made this moment even more magical because for just a few minutes the outside seemed calm and everyone free of any worries.
One of the most captivating moments of the concert was when “Loving Someone” started play and suddenly the lights projected the LGBT flag colors into the crowd. I couldn’t help but smile and feel comfort in knowing one of my favorite bands is using their music to show support.
The band played many fan favorites including “Robbers”, “Sex”, “Girls”, and “Somebody Else”. They ended the set with “The Sound”. On the last verse, Matty asked for everyone to jump. Seeing close to 5,000 people jumping and singing along will definitely be one of my favorite sights I’ve witnessed. In that moment, nothing but pure joy exuded from the crowd.
As I walked out of the venue, I couldn’t help but smile. I overheard girls telling their friends about the experiences they had with Matty being so close to them and the happiness they felt. It’s so amazing how The 1975 never fails to impress. Seeing them live is an experience that leaves me speechless every time.
News & Reviews from the Fiery Mosh Pits of Arizona