Nothing can prepare you for the ear splitting sound of a 16+ crowd at a concert screaming for the band. I was reintroduced to this level of enthusiasm when I got to see San Cisco and openers MOTHXR at Bowery Ballroom last week. As a woman in my 30’s the idea of running up a full flight of stairs carrying about 15 pounds of photo equipment makes me cringe, but that’s exactly what I found myself doing when the doors finally opened 10 minutes behind schedule. This wasn’t by choice, by any means. When a crowd that size moves, you involuntarily move with them or get trampled to death. I chose the former.
After what felt like a year waiting in 100 degree heat that I assume was generated by the mass of overexcited vibrating bodies pressed against each other into any open space, MOTHXR finally took the stage and the entire place erupted. Having seen them before, I thought I was prepared for the shrill screams that were sure to rain down from the rafters as soon as Penn Badgley took the stage. What I didn’t prepare for was the girl right behind me screaming so loudly while trying to get close enough to touch Penn’s naked biceps that she shoved me right into the girl in front of me. Poor casualty of war. Nevertheless, MOTHXR got off to a super slow start, thanks to some technical difficulties with the sound. That seemed to throw the entire vibe off for the majority of their set, but they seemed to hit their stride around the time “Centerfold” and “Victim” made their appearance in the setlist.
Outside of Penn’s vocal duties and obvious frontman appeal, drummer Attis Jerrell has serious chops on the kit, and added flair to their sound that was undeniable. The same can also be said for guitarist Simon Oscroft, who had more than 1 killer guitar solo during the night. When the last song, and admittedly my favorite, “Easy,” was played, the earlier technical difficulties were forgotten, leaving their set on a high note.
Now take those same shrieks that engulfed the room for MOTHXR and multiply those by ten. That’s either the decibel level of a jet engine, or San Cisco fans when the boys, and girl, finally took the stage. While the band was new to my ears, there was no mistaking the love the crowd held for them when they started the night with “Golden Revolver.” Their sound is upbeat, with bouncy drums and catchy melodies that were incredibly infectious as the crowd danced along. Other highlights from the night were “Run,” “About You,” and “Too Much Time Together.” I loved their sound completely, but I especially loved seeing drummer Scarlett Stevens do her thing on the kit while lead singer Jordi Davieson kept the crowd singing along word for word all night.
While this was the last stop on San Cisco’s tour, let’s cross our fingers that they will be back soon, hopefully at a much larger venue with ample air conditioning and earplugs at the door.
Article: Lesley Keller