The Lumineers’ Sweltering Sydney Show is infectiously Joyful.
The Lumineers touch down last night for their first Sydney show as part of their “Bright Side World Tour”. The American alternative-folk band played a reverting interactive set. The audience passionately clapped, stomped and sang in the thunderous atmosphere of The Aware Super Theatre.
The “Brightside World Tour” signals the American band’s first visit to Australia since their appearance at Splendour In The Grass in 2019. In addition to the upcoming tour, the band is embarking on their first standalone headline; previously performing at festivals alongside larger tours.
Intimately surrounded by the breathtaking audiovisual properties of The Aware Super Theatre; the fan-shaped arena induced a warm timbre felt throughout the performances. Queensland duo Hollow Coves (made up of Ryan Henderson and Matt Cairns) opened with a folk-infused lush acoustic performance.
Hollow Cove’s voices blended seamlessly together with their light airy harmonies. Intricately weaving stories of home and the coastline together through their lyrics; incorporations of brassy-toned harmonicas coupled with rhythmically strummed guitars embodied what a sense of home felt like.
“Welcome Back To Live Shows”
As the band struts out one-by-one to the beckoning of drummer Jeremiah Fraites, the crowd erupts as the opening song “Brightside” rings throughout the theatre. The crowd is boisterous as the turbulent energy of excitement manifests throughout the cheering crowd. Bodies groove in sync, as not a single person is left seating.
The momentum of raucous infectious energy does not slow down. The American band’s third song of the night “Ho Hey” earns a chiming symphony of echoing voices sweltering together as they belt the band break-out single back to them. The six piece band takes centre stage, with astonishing crowd work, the spectacular exchange between the crowd creates a unifying experience as they sing together;
I belong with you, you belong with me
You’re my sweetheart
I belong with you, you belong with me
You’re my sweetheart
“ Welcome back to live shows,” Wesley Schultz smiles as he strums his guitar. Hearing the eruption of screams that, from a generously packed 900 seats was incredibly and tremendously mutual.
The lighting dims and the crowd is left in anticipation. Amongst the silhouette, you see the frantic swapping of instruments as the band preps for their next song. The band launches into their next song “Angela” with the thumping of mallets against acoustic drumkits resonating in your chest. The American band boasts an impressive array of instruments incorporated within their music throughout the night. Often bringing in the assistance of the cello and violin. Their string section divinely entwined smooth melodic elements that added a rich texture to the band’s performances.
However, the lengths of impressive instrumentation do not stop there. The band at times even incorporates a shiny black accordion that’s squeezed and stretched, breathing life into their songs. As the concert progresses, the magnetic chemistry of the band is a spectacular sight to see. Bounding and leaping throughout the crowd, the audience cheers for the antics of lead singer Schultz as he floats through the unwavering energy of the mosh.
Even the multi-faceted Jay Van Dyke, who can be seen throughout the night grooving amongst the piano keys or switching it up between guitar and base gets in on the antics. He’s seen throughout the night barefoot and stomping on top of the piano, beckoning the crowd to clap and sing along. Amongst the chaos of the encore, Jay can be seen flying through and interacting with the crowd. Fans cheer as he is lifted upon the shoulders of a fan and carried back to the front stage. All whilst still playing the guitar.
A Stunning Visual Performance
The Lumineers perform a lush variety of songs that are equally sentimental as they are notably favoured by their fans. From the symphonious quavering response of “Ophelia” to the high notes of “Dead Sea”; Schultz muses with the crowd meanings behind songs laced with true love, heartbreak and as the lead singer laughs, “a polite way to say **** you”.
It’s been ten years since the Lumineers released their first album, and Schulz describes how they played the first track on that album, “Flowers In Your Hair”. The audience is taken back as the band take it up a notch. Visually appealing shots are reflective of the song flicker and project behind them. The audience is captivated as they sway along. It’s an intoxicating and nostalgic experience.
To heighten the experience, a mesmerising disco ball glistens brightly against the crowd, lighting up the arena. It’s true magic as Schultz takes centre stage by himself to sing “Slow it down”. It’s a visually stunning performance which has the whole crowd in a trance.
The band take the stage to perform “Where We Are”. It’s a touching tribute to the last few years, Schultz compares it to a serious car accident he and his wife went through. As he reminisces upon the image of his wife and himself sitting against a totalled car that had been rolled three times; smoking, laughing and bleeding, he reminds the audience that no matter where we are; everything will be ok.
One More Song
After what had been a tremendous effect from The Lumineers, the end had drawn near; or so we had thought. Hundreds of feet stomped throughout the stands all the way to the back creating a monstrous rolling thunder and the crowd chants for “one last song”.
It’s an electric atmosphere laced with hope and the exhilarating feeling of apprehension. Surely enough the band comes bounding back on to deliver an ostentatious display of talent. Ending on “Stubbourn Love” the crowd chimes together in unison to what has been a spectacular night. The show ends with bandmates chucking mementoes into the crowd. Guitar picks, drumsticks, set lists and even a maraca is tossed fondly into a gleaming crowd. As the band exits the stage with adoring cheers and smiles, violinist and pianist Lauren Jacobson cartwheels off the stage.
The Lumineers continue their Australian tour throughout November. You can find tickets here.
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