On Friday, March 13th, the Los Angeles-based Wiltern opened its doors for a night of alternative rock with the Lunatic Party 2015, the tour comprised of Franklin, Tennessee’s Colony House, Los Angeles natives Sir Sly, and South Africa’s The Kongos.
Southern boys Colony House opened the night, and every night of the 32-week musical voyage with a crisp new sound that echoes the Kings of Leon injected with a liquid dose of noise-pop and dipped in shoe-gaze.
Caleb Chapman, Will Chapman and Scott Mills make up the three-piece band that hit the crowd with a high-octane set and made them rush the stage almost instantly. The crowd consisted of young adults and parents, many who sat by the concession stands while the concert went on for most of the time. The group played material from their full-length debut When I Was Younger, under the Descendant Records label and demonstrated that the south continues to be a breeding ground of talent. The new band’s set was brief, but met with excitement and approval form the Angeleno audience, which shook their bodies until the band left the stage.
L.A.’s own, synthesizer-based indie pop de-lux, Sir Sly captivated the Wiltern with a powerful set that included music from their debut album, You Haunt Me as well as multiple guest musician’s including two drummers. The band picked up where Colony House left off and took the audience across dark tinged rock vignettes and synth swirls that rest in a high-energy realm.
From their opening jam, “Inferno,” to their haunting alternative hit “Ghost,” the band kept the audience at attention. Frontman Landon Jacobs is a showman who struts across the stage spewing energy and charming the crowd with infectious pop hooks. That night Sir Sly made the Wiltern thunder and L.A. proud. And yet, while the show up until now was solid, the crowd seemed to be suffering from lack of attention and a never-ending flow in and out from the concert to the concession stands.
Then came the Arizona-by-way-of-South Africa-based indie rockers Kongos. The band headlined the tour that highlighted some the best new of the indie talent. Brothers Dylan, Daniel, Jesse, and Johnny Kongos, the sons of South African singer/songwriter John Kongos are the four-piece, which broke into the limelight with their hit single “Come with Me,” and which closed the evening with their gospel like rock.
Once Sir Sly left the stage the air loosened and so did the crowd, it felt as if the last two acts had taken all the audience had. Nevertheless, plenty were still ready for the closer. The Kongos came on with a thundering entrance and performed songs from their 2013 self-released debut Lunatic. Unfortunately mid-way through the set some of the young crowd [and their parents] began to leave the venue. It wasn’t a school night, but it felt like it. They closed their set with “I’m Only Joking, but came back with an encore that included a cover of their father’s song “Tokoloshe Man,” and a cover of “Blue Monday,” by new wave royalty New Order.