Last time this band was in Toronto, they played the Wrongbar- a show I sadly couldn’t attend. So once they announced another show at my favourite venue on November the 5th at The Phoenix Concert Theatre, I knew I couldn’t miss them this time. I had heard many rumours about how great their concerts are, so it was time for me to find out just how spectacular a Grouplove show could be…
Before their concert I had the chance to head down to The Phoenix early and meet the band. Now this was pretty damn sweet I must admit. I also had the brilliant opportunity of interviewing Grouplove’s Hannah Hooper and Christian Zucconi! So if you want to watch a funny, musical and rad interview with Grouplove, lead your eyes to the video below!
The anticipation wouldn’t stop rising as all of us Grouplove fans stood in the crowd. I couldn’t help but notice how fantastic their stage set-up was. It was extremely psychedelic and intriguing; neon paint-splattered balls hung from the ceiling, microphone stands were wrapped in flowers, and the amps were displaying some painted flower power, too. After checking out all of the elements, finally, the lights dimmed and everyone knew it was time.
Grouplove opened with one of their singles Itchin’ on a Photograph. Right away the crowd was jumping up and down singing as loudly as possible. The band joined in on the jumping, and all this energy didn’t really stop throughout the whole night. As we all moved through the tracks, the audience began to get more involved; the singing got louder, more dancing occurred and there’s no doubt we were having an amazing time.
Following were tracks Don’t Say Oh Well, Lovely Cup (one of my personal favourites), Love Will Save Your Soul and Flowers. I have to speak about Lovely Cup for a moment; it was honestly one of the best moments of the night. It’s such an uplifting and fun song. It pretty much embodies the Grouplove sound with its bubbly bass, and ridiculously catchy harmonies and vocals. And the way everyone sang even the little details of “sha la la” and sang the guitar riff was exhilarating!
Afterwards the band played Betty’s A Bombshell, Everyone’s Gonna Get High, Gold Ghost, Naked Kids and Spun. It was amazing how insane the crowd went for Spun. Everyone came together as a unit in the audience and participated in dancing around to this great tune. It really added a cheery vibe which filled the room with life. It’s times like these which make me really love music.
Once everyone spun around to Spun, Grouplove played Chloe along with Close Your Eyes and Count to Ten and their final song before the encore, Slow. It was interesting to see the crowd move into a slower song and listen carefully as the group gorgeously sang, “time moves slow.” Once Grouplove left the stage, of course everyone began to yell, “GROUPLOVE, GROUPLOVE!” Once the members came back, the crowd got quite the lovely treat from the band! They gathered themselves at the front of the stage to play Cruel and Beautiful World- totally unplugged. No mics, no amps, just gorgeous harmonies and an acoustic guitar. This was a very special and charming moment.
With a well deserved cheer, then came Borderlines and Aliens and Tongue Tied. It was obvious that Tongue Tied was received pretty damn well by the crowd, for as soon as the ringing guitar chords began playing, almost everyone looked at each other with the expression of, “Oh my God, I love this song!” Then they went on to play a cover of Whitney Houston’s I Wanna Dance with Somebody- a nice and fun surprise! Then of course, Grouplove ended the night with Colours, where everyone sang “and I see black, black, green, and brown, brown, brown and blue, yellow, violets, red!” The perfect finisher!
Just from the first track I couldn’t believe how crazy energetic the band were; as Hannah didn’t stop jumping and dancing the whole night. How one woman could have such control over her audience and rock the stage as well as she did was impressive! The lights throughout the night were almost as wild as their performance. And in the end, all of the concert rumours weren’t really rumours- they were facts. Grouplove put on one hell of an energetic concert with an amazing setlist (hitting the perfect selection of songs), and the most rad stage set-up my eyes have ever seen. So thank you so much Grouplove, for giving the whole audience a night to never forget!
For photos of the gig, click here.
Alicia Atout x