June 7, 2017

Day Wave and Blonder | Vancouver

Before heading to the show, I already knew the power of Jackson Phillips' music. The first time my ears were blessed by the musical genius that is Day Wave, I was at home, sitting in my pajamas while watching a Michalaks vlog -- as per my typical Sunday routine. I was wholly unprepared for the instant connection I'd feel to a song (Total Zombie) that was simply soundtracking the video. Since then, I have spent many a moment soundtracking my own life to the rest of his music. I've even gone so far as proclaiming how I'd pick Day Wave to create the score if for some highly unlikely chance that my life were ever to be made into a movie.

Before we delve into Day Wave, however, let's talk about Blonder -- an artist so new that there's only three songs gracing Spotify; four if you count the Wet Remix. I hadn't known who the openers were going to be prior to the show. I went into it blindly as I tend to do for opening acts, and I'm beyond thrilled to report that New Yorkers did not disappoint. Barely one song in and I was already making a mental note to add Blonder's music into my playlists. 

It seemed so fitting that I was being introduced to Constantine Anastasakis' for the first time in a venue that was illuminated by a neon red glow -- simultaneously gritty and cozy in all the right ways. Somehow, I felt like I was in a tiny but packed venue in New York, albeit not having been to the city just yet. 

Blonder's EP, cleverly titled "$5" will be released on June 16th which is sooner than soon. I've been tuned into LeanTalk To Me, and In and Out in the meanwhile, bracing myself, and preparing to hit repeat on the songs that follow all summer long.

My only regret is not knowing the songs well enough to have been able to sing along and (awkwardly) dance to the set on Saturday night. Still, the lack of knowledge in no way hindered me from swayin' and boppin' along.
On to Day Wave, of whom I was a livewire of excitement over ever since I spotted the announcement for the show. From the moment Jackson stepped on stage, I was instantly transported into a vintage filtered music video montage that I never wanted to end. It's worth noting that a version of that montage is where my soul drifts off to when I'm normally listening to Day Wave. However, hearing the almost paradoxical mix of euphoria and melancholy live and in person was taking the experience on a whole 'nother level. 

The thing that I appreciate about Jackson's music may come as a surprise to most critics. Where some may point out how his songs sound very similar to one another, I value and appreciate the cohesiveness of his discography. In a way, I love that the tunes all merge and bleed into each other, completely embodying the feeling of a hazy and endless summer.


(Okay so the sound quality of the video is not the best, seeing as I was standing directly beneath the stereos BUT if you want a glimpse of the boys in action, then click away)
A quick shout-out to the bassist, Henry Moser, whose killer moves kept me grinning from ear to ear all through the night. To tell you the truth, I was mesmerized, utterly transfixed by his footwork.


This one's presently my ultimate favorite. It's hard to narrow down exactly what sets its apart from the rest. Although one thing is for sure, the song is injected with nostalgia and makes me want to go on a road trip, roll the windows down and stick my arm out to do that hand surfing thing people do. 

2 | Promises

This next bit will sound weird, I know that to be true. This song instantly puts me in a good mood because it makes me want to bounce up and down. As soon as the first verse kicks in, I tend to start head bobbing -- and then when the chorus hits, I'm pretty much fighting every urge to stop my limbs from shaking.
3 | Disguise

This last one is by no means the least. This song slows things down to a sway.  It makes me nostalgic for instances I haven't experienced, like slow-dancing at a prom back in the 80's or swaying with a special someone in the kitchen on a lazy Sunday afternoon. 
The set-list also included a fittingly chosen and well executed cover of Ceremony by New Order. Thankfully, there's a recorded version of this thanks to the SXSF Spotify Sessions. I know nothing about musical terminology, but it was the tiniest bit slower than the original. It was a treat to hear an ever so slightly more subdued version. 
Altogether, I couldn't have picked a better way to spend my Saturday night. A huge thanks to Cec for coming with, the people we met at the show, the guy who let us grab the set-lists and to Jackson for signing em'. 

10 outta 10, highly recommend catching Blonder and Day Wave when they swing by your city next. If you just want to immerse yourself in a rose colored haze, I promise, there's no better way than to induce that experience with these lads and their tunes.

Stay gold,


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