Earlier this year Scottish band CHVRCHES released what I would call the album of the year: Love Is Dead. This colorful, entry level record got me hooked on the group. In the last few months I have been listening to all of their albums on repeat.
On night two of a sold out run in Saint Paul, fans were collectively blown away by the power, attitude, and poise of Lauren Mayberry and company. The band had mentioned their goal of earning a First Avenue star. Despite this show being at Palace, I believe they earned it.
During their hour and a half set, Mayberry and company took the audience on a tour of their critically acclaimed sound. The set list was a perfect mix of their old and new songs. Highlights of their set were fan favorite “Leave A Trace” and newcomers like “Miracle” and “Graffiti.”
Between songs, the stage banter between band members was genuine and entertaining. Mayberry recounted humorous stories of an ex-boyfriend, gave a shout out to Minneapolis based singer Lizzo, and proved to be funnier than most stand up comics out there.
Midway through the set, Mayberry and synth player Martin Doherty switched places as he took over vocal duties. In a moment I thought would act as an intermission of sorts, Doherty blew my mind with his unique voice and high energy. He took total command of the room and rocked it!
There were countless highlights during this monumental performance. Lauren Mayberry is the kind of performer who leaves it all on the stage. I got to be right at the barrier during this show and noticed so many Lauren-isms throughout the performance.
From her facial expressions, subtle hand gestures, and points where she spun passionately around in circles she dominated the stage. Though fun sized, her voice is extremely powerful. Throughout she sounded even better than she does on the albums- she is a true live performer.
My favorite moment in the show was the strong opening track Get Out. Additionally, I was introduced to cuts I wasn’t as familiar with. I left the venue with their jam Science/Visions stuck in my head.
Opening for CHVRCHES tonight was California based group Lo Moon. Most recently, the band played at the Turf Club- check out an older review Music in Minnesota did on them. I found them enjoyable, and they seemed to enjoy moving up to playing larger venues.
Closing with their powerful synth ballad Never Say Die, CHVRCHES proved that they are a band who never will- I look forward to hearing more from them and seeing them again. View their entire set now on The Current’s Youtube channel!
- Get Out
- Bury It
- We Sink
- God’s Plan
- Under the Tide
- Really Gone
- Leave a Trace
- Clearest Blue
- The Mother We Share
- Never Say Die