A long line that was steadily moving, was also being undeviatingly replenished as a sold out Paper Tiger filled to capacity on a clear and chilly night.
Lower Dens kicked it off and had a sizable draw. It was obvious by crowd reactions to songs like "Ondine" and "To Die In LA" that Lower Dens had plenty of fans in attendance. The drone-meets-dream pop sound of Jana Hunter’s silky, bold voice drove the night early with pounding bass lines and a reliable beat. Noticeably, Lower Dens was only a duo for last night’s performance with the bass, and keys being sampled. It was a pretty great performance nonetheless, especially with Hunter's moving vocal solo that closed out their set.
Beginning with “Like Acid Rain”, songs from Multilove made up most of Unknown Mortal Orchestra's set, but they still performed tracks off their self-titled album and 2013's II. Besides UMO's incredible song writing capabilities, the level of musicianship exhibited was amazing. You could hear the Stevie Wonder and 1970’s influences really come through in the live show. The solos added a missing element typically not seen at many indie rock shows today. The improvisation made UMO’s songs feel fresh and alive, a few times the improv devolved into a jam band session, which, is also not typically found at popular modern rock shows.
"What day is this?"
"It is a Saturday..? 'cause the way you were movin' out here, I thought it was a Monday." Buuurn! In San Antonio's defense, the UMO show in Austin was also sold out and last night's audience had a good chunk of fans from Austin (trust me, SA music fans know how to get rowdy and aren’t too cool to get down).
As the night continued, they played a slightly more upbeat version of “So Good At Being In Trouble” and it had the entire crowd singing along, it was a bit unexpected and one of those hold up your lighter moments (even though people don't really do that anymore).
The drummer, Riley Geare, and new keyboardist, Quincy McCrary, were mind blowing and provided some of the best highlights of last night’s performance. Geare at one point busted into a drum solo you couldn’t handle on some strong acid. Band members took a knee or stepped back when one of the others was soloing, which was awesome. McCrary really flexed his skills during an elaborate piano solo that morphed into the beginning of “FFunny FFriends,” absolutely incredible. Unknown Mortal Orchestra's last three songs included the title track off their latest album "Multilove" and ended the night with the smash hit "Can't Keep Checking My Phone."