Three callously cool up-and-coming indie bands played the Great Scott in Allston on Dec. 4. Dizzy, a band comprised of singer Katie Munshaw, and brothers Alex, Mackenzie, and Charlie Spencer covering drums, guitar, and bass, opened the show. Songs “Swim” and “Stars and Moons” are the only two available on listening platforms, but they played a variation of newer songs, including a cover of Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs.” Their sound can best be illustrated as floaty pop-centric indie, with the lead singer’s dance moves mimicking a Lorde-esque free teenage spirit.
SHAED, the co-headliner from Washington D.C, consists of singer Chelsea Lee, and brothers Spencer and Max Ernst, both respectively drummers and keyboardists. They utilized a vibrant light show that changed and pulsed rhythmically to the beat of each song, making the atmosphere in the tiny venue skyrocket. Their 2016 EP, Just Wanna See, was played in full, showcasing Lee’s unbelievable vocal range and the trio’s passion for their synth-pop ballads. Some of the highlights include “Name On It,” “Perfume,” and “Too Much.” Their insanely dedicated niche of fans sang wholeheartedly to “Lonesome,” their newest release, and one of their most intimate and haunting songs. With each new song, the audience gained more respect for the band, who were impressively put together for being such newcomers in the scene. They stand out from the heavily-dominating melancholic, sad-boy indie bands of the time–a real light at the end of the tunnel.
Foreign Air, also a D.C. outfit and a duo by the names of Jacob Michael and Jesse Clasen, quite literally brought the house down. They played through their 2016 EP, For the Light. Everybody in the room, if they weren’t dancing before, became so entranced by their daunting, spacey, hip-hop influenced–at times full-on psychedelic–songs about losing yourself. Lead singer Clasen made the atmosphere seem a lot more personal. He made direct eye contact with fans when singing certain lyrics and lost himself along with those dancing their hearts out. Michael’s groove on both the bass and keys made him stand out just as much as Clasen, and their synchronized passion was made extremely evident by the looks of pure joy on their faces. It’s always the best to see a band doing what they love, without having anything to prove, and an onstage persona that is genuinely human. “In the Shadows” was a pure crowd favorite, a juxtaposition of electric rhythm and feel with the harrowing lyrics. Other highlights from their set include the grandiose “Call Off The Dogs,” intoxicating “Echo,” and my personal favorite, “Better For It Lying,” which caught me off guard with its galvanizing yet relatable lyrics: “I just wanna be mean to someone / I just wanna be mean and I can’t help it.” They ended their set with the memorable “Free Animal,” arguably the tune that woke up every poor soul who wasn’t already feeling the high. Their set was a dance party for those who needed one, but was a party that didn’t need lush, overly-optimistic tones to accomplish it.