The Beaches rocked their way straight into my playlist. Despite their cheery-sounding name and 1960’s-reminiscent press photos, the Canadian all-female quartet is not all sunshine warmth. The badass Beaches are almost like Warpaint’s evil twin, with their darker, grungier punk-infused vibe. The ladies set the mood right as the only opener, bringing swagger, sequins, and cascades of hair swishing around stage.
During the set change, the crowd eagerly anticipated the unveiling of Death From Above 1979’s signature elephant heads. What appeared to be a minimalist set up actually turned out to be a border of lights around the stage, rigged to toggle and blink with the band’s heavy-hitting punk/rock/dance set.
Bassist and synthesizer player Jesse F. Keeler strolled onstage in all black, starkly contrasting drummer and vocalist Sebastian Grainger’s all white getup. The duo’s monochromatic look kept the vibe artsy while allowing for their performance and lighting to shine through. DFA started off with”Nomad,” a perfect opener gradually building up energy with Grainger steadily tapping his cymbals and Keeler revving his guitar as if he were awakening a beast. Seconds in, they had primed the mood for the circle pit to form in the middle of the crowd. Their set maintained a balance of steady head banging, foot tapping, and considerate moshing. Grainger impressively sang whilst drumming, hitting his high notes without missing a beat. Grainger only stood up for a couple songs to sing and bring a little interaction to the other side of the stage. The Beaches drummer Eliza Emmanuel McDaniel joined in packing in an insane drum set for “Romantic Rights,” sending the crowd into a frenzy. The band polled the audience for their encore, gesturing for “Right On, Frankenstein!” and “Pull Out.” Their hard and fast rendition of “Pull Out” ended their with tons of energy, leaving the crowd excitedly sticking around hoping for set lists and drumsticks.