Ali Fernand – Managing Editor
Dream pop band Tennis performed at College Street Music Hall on Saturday, Oct. 28. The band consists of a married couple who perform with the aesthetics of soft ‘70s pop.
Tennis has gained popularity in the indie scene as a fun, chill band. They have been critically acclaimed, garnering many positive reviews on their albums. For this reason, seeing them in a live setting was particularly exciting.
This performance was a portion of Tennis’ tour for their most recent album, “Pollen,” which was released earlier this year. “Pollen” features more of the classic rock inspiration of their music with energetic songs that add variety to their setlist.
They have two other albums, “Swimmer” and “Yours Conditionally,” which contain some of their more popular songs. “Need Your Love” is their most popular song, with a fun piano dance vibe and tempo changes. This song translated very well to a live setting, with them bringing a full touring band on stage instead of it just being the two full-time band members.
The show opened with Sam Evian, who is a singer-songwriter with a groovy rock element to his music. Evian’s music was well received by the crowd, as his vocals were excellent, and his guitar player performed many impressive guitar riffs. He performed for a half hour before Tennis came on stage to steal the show.
Once Tennis came on stage, the crowd of a few hundred people began to cheer and dance. The lighting for their set was simplistically beautiful. Most of the colors, a gradient of pastels, were reflective of their album “Swimmer”, which has a purple, blue and pink gradient.
The songs sounded amazing live, and their touring band was talented. The drummer was perfectly on beat despite some of the more complicated rhythm and tempo changes. The lead singer’s vocals were incredible, as she had a very high voice which sounded just as good as it does in the recordings. There were also a number of synths on stage, one for almost every band member. The lead singer was often the one playing the synth, but the guitar and bass player also had chances to show their synth skills.
Some of the best songs live were “Runner”, which contains a lot of synths and guitar riffs. The lighting also reflected this song well as the chorus is a smooth yet energetic burst. Another great one was “I’ll Haunt You”, as that song opens with an echoey piano then grows to a groovy pop song.
Overall, this was a fun show with incredible musicians. College Street Music Hall continues to be a great venue to see artists who might not be as mainstream. It is a nice, intimate venue where you can feel a more personal energy during a performance with talented artists.