This past Tuesday, San Cisco brought their sunny Australian pop to a packed house at The Troubadour. As childhood friends the band started playing together in 2009, eventually releasing several EPs and their first full-length in 2012. They are now doing a limited US tour in support of their forthcoming second LP, GRACETOWN.
San Cisco have a fun approach to their music, never seeming to take any of it, or themselves too seriously. This is not to say they don’t take the music seriously, rather they don’t take their fame seriously. Oh, what was that, you haven’t heard of them? Well, get ready to know them.
San Cisco have already taken Oz by storm topping the iTunes charts, several nominations for ARIA Music Awards, hitting the top 10 in Triple J Hottest 100 (national Australian radio station) and garnering rave accolades from critics. When they took the stage at The Troubadour you would have thought you were seeing a secret show for Nick Jonas or some other ultra pop sensation with the way this crowd (read: girls) were literally freaking out. Then when they played their hit “Awkward” the place erupted into a massive sing-along. The crowd was swaying and singing through silly grins.
San Cisco embodies everything that is good and exciting about electro pop. They have hooky guitars, pulsing drums and catchy earworm lyrics. Think a less serious Vampire Weekend with a dose of male-female vocal harmonies. Jordi Davieson plays guitar and sings in flawless balance with Scarlett Stevens’ sweet voice and tight drum playing. Their blend of bright guitars and tingling synth instigates toe-taps and shoulder bounce.
When the band played “Run,” their first single off GRACETOWN, everyone once again started singing along. I suppose that is the beauty of the modern age; we can obsess over a song that hasn’t even been released on radio to the masses because of this thing called the internet. Another crowd pleaser was the cover of “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk. With the disco ball in full effect San Cisco did a great job of bringing the groove of the song with a unique beach-y flare that got the crowd to dance and again sing-along.
Opening for San Cisco was Cam Avery of Tame Impala and POND fame. He played a strip down set with only a guitar and his harmonica. There were no fuzzy or hard hitting guitar or reverb, it was just him standing and playing under a spotlight. His voice was really highlighted here, going from high and angelic, to a grimy blues rawness. The crowd stood rapt at attention captivated by Avery and the way with which he was dicing up their hearts. His set seemed to consist mcam ostly of tracks from his lesser known project, The Growl, which is bluesy garage rock in the vein of early Black Keys. He ended with a beautiful grungy rendition of “John the Revelator.” I really hope that this is a sign of more things to come from the multi-talented Avery.
Photography & Words: Anne-Marie Schiefer