Review and Photos by Lauren Barthold | @bylaurenb
Fitz & the Tantrums (Fitz) and Capital Cities (CC) joined forces to create “The Bright Futures Tour” along with opening act, Beat Club (BC). The west coast indie pop bands certainly brightened The Fillmore on Sunday, 11.17.
As fans poured into the venue at 6:30pm, the giant foam Wayfarer sunglasses lined with lights immediately gave away that CC would take the stage first. However, there were three drum sets on the stage. With no knowledge of an opening act, four gentlemen took the stage who were not Fitz or CC at 7pm. The band, later introducing themselves as Beat Club from Los Angeles, California began playing an instrumental called ‘Globetrotters’. From the first few notes, I knew I would love them. Their music reminds me of a cross between dark Depeche Mode and the synthesizer sound of The Cure. BC only has three songs available on iTunes, and I purchased all of them as soon as I got home.
At 8:30pm sharp, the lights dimmed and a short and oppositely tall man walked to center stage. Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian opened with ‘Kangaroo Court’, and went into ‘Origami’, ‘Patience Gets Us Nowhere Fast’, along with some others from their first record. In the middle of the set, CC covered the Bee Gees’ ‘Stayin’ Alive’, mixing in the chorus of Weezer’s Undone (The Sweater Song). They finished with ‘Chasing You’, ‘Love Away’, ‘I Sold My Bed, But Not My Stereo’, and of course, ‘Safe and Sound’. It was during the second to last song that horn player Spencer Ludwig blew the audience away.
CC uses horns a lot in their music, and they simply could not have chosen a better musician than Ludwig to play the parts. They ended their show with a dance party to a remix of their own hit ‘Safe and Sound’, leaving the audience sweaty and shirtless for Fitz.
At 10pm, the lights dimmed once more and the line ‘More than just a dream’ echoed as a neon pink heart lowered in place of the sunglasses. Michael Fitzpatrick and Noelle Scaggs took the stage to ‘Get Away’, moving into ‘Don’t Gotta Work It Out’, ‘Break the Walls’, ‘Breakin’ the Chains of Love’, ‘Keepin Our Eyes Out’, and ‘Spark’. They too perfectly covered an older song with ‘Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Eurythmics. Before ‘House of Fire’, Fitzpatrick told a very detailed story about having a great day and leaving work only to come home to find your girlfriend cheating on you with another man. They went into ‘Fools Gold’ and ‘Out of My League’. Fitzpatrick and Scaggs sang ‘Last Raindrop’ face to face before going into one of my personal favorites, ‘6AM’.
After two more songs, CC’s horn player Ludwig joined Fitz’s horn player James King for an improvisation battle. At one point, King even threw in the recognizable melody from ‘Baker Street’ by Gerry Rafferty.
Finally, Fitz came back with an encore of ‘Money Grabber’ and ‘The Walker’, sending the audience home with pink and white confetti in their hair.
I felt as if I attended three concerts that night. They were all unique, yet blended together perfectly. Each act introduced the next appropriately, without being forgotten about in the end. I highly recommend catching any three of these bands if you can. Beat Club, Capital Cities, as well as Fitz & the Tantrums make music the way it should sound.