The Los Angeles-based surf rock band, Allah-Las, took the stage of Brighton Music Hall with their vintage look, instruments, and sound on March 25.
Since the release of their first few singles in 2011, the quartet has been compared to bands like The Zombies and The Animals. They achieve this retro sound while still infusing contemporary aspects to create music that makes a listener long for the ‘60’s and a California beach.
The band is comprised of Miles Michaud on vocals and guitar, Matthew Correia on drums, Pedrum Siadatian as lead guitar, and Spencer Dunham on bass, with all members taking turns with vocals and backup vocals.
Three out of the four members met working at Amoeba Records in Los Angeles, California. They went from coworkers, to friends, to bandmates playing backyard shows at friends’ houses. Now the band is releasing and touring their third album, Calico Review.
In this album, the songwriting duties were equally distributed amongst the bandmates. This cooperation and unison clearly shows in their live performance; all members took turns singing lead on certain songs.
Opening for them was The Babe Rainbow from Byron Bay, Australia. The psychedelic retro band got the crowd moving. Their whimsical and lively energy seemed reminiscent of early Rolling Stones. Like the headliners, The Babe Rainbow has a ‘60’s revival sound.
The band came out to perform a diverse set list comprised of many tracks off the new album along with hits from their prior albums. Lead singer Michaud sleepily and charmingly sang out the tunes and would take short breaks to sip tea from his mug while the others would sip from their Coronas.
The classic ‘60’s rock sound of the Allah-Las drew in a diverse crowd Saturday night. The sold out crowd was a mix of college students, 30 year olds, and older adults all ready to be transported by the Allah-Las’ sound.
The stage presence of the band was subtly captivating and humble. No wild presence on stage, just a group of people playing honest music. The rowdy crowd appreciated it shouting “I love you” every chance they could.
Many tracks from their self-titled album were interwoven into the set and generated a lot of commotion from the crowd. The laidback tunes “Don’t You Forget It” and “501-415” had the crowd swaying around. The crowd also sang along in unison to “Could be You,” the single off the new record. Michaud was clearly thrilled with the popularity and thanked the crowd for their support.
The band filled their set list with a couple of instrumental songs like “Ferus Gallery” that got the crowd just as energetic. With the laid-back rhythmic percussion of Correia and screeching guitar solos of Siadatian, it was difficult for the crowd to be still.
Towards the end, the band had an epic and dramatic build up to one of their most famous songs, “Tell Me What’s on Your Mind.” The band was almost teasing the audience with the beginning interlude. Allah-Las shifted the melody ever so slightly so the audience could not yet sing along, but still know what was coming.
The Allah-Las ended their set with an encore where they played an extended version of “Catamaran,” the first track off their debut album. At this point, the crowd was at their peak, jumping across the room and belting the scratchy tunes.
The nostalgia of their music resonates not only with the audience, but with the members of the Allah-Las themselves. Their presence on stage mimics their laid-back sound, but it is clear they are passionate and committed to the music they make.