Alexander O’Conner, better known as Rex Orange County, does it all: sings, song-writes, produces, and plays just about every instrument imaginable. And he’s not even old enough to drink (legally) in the states. But what else would you expect from a monotone crooner groomed at the same British performing arts school that produced the likes of Adele and King Krule? So maybe it comes as no surprise that Rex Orange County’s live show at The Fonda was just as impressive.
A full band complete with strings and horns, a guest appearance by Thea, and plenty of songs performed solo rounded out the set. Oh, and then Randy Newman made an appearance to join O’Conner in “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” and I’m not sure who was more surprised, O’Conner or the crowd. Don’t be quick to assume the show was at all gimmicky, though. The braces-clad concert goers – the street outside the venue looked like a middle school carpool line post-show; parents, lots of parents – screamed back every word and danced their asses off to a show that was very no-frills (the balloon release malfunctioned for the second night in a row). A simple backdrop and some lights were all Rex Orange County needed.