Walk the Moon @ o2 Institute 7th April, 2018

America based electronic dance pop creators Walk the Moon are known for creating bombastic, energetic music with live shows to match. With a hint of 80s flair, their music is best described as a nonstop party, something noted over their three albums. The liveliness in their sonic power set up big expectations for their live show, and Walk the Moon did not disappoint. On their Press Restart Tour, Walk the Moon washed the sad jaded stain on our hearts, injecting their live show with passion and pleasure that completely transformed the night and transformed those in attendance.

A mixture of jovial young faces doused in glitter and colour intermixed with more weathered faces, an interesting conglomeration that often finds its way to Walk the Moon gigs. Walk the Moon is notorious for creating high-octane songs, tunes that attract a younger more rambunctious crowd. This however is in some ways juxtaposed; Walk the Moon’s tunes have a distinctive nostalgic vibe, often pulling from the 70s and 80s in their base sonic structure, bringing in an older audience. Each subculture gathered into one large room at the O2 Institute, anxiously waiting for the Press Restart Tour.

After a typical sound intro that included excerpts from Lion King and some alien styled ambience, Walk the Moon bounded onto the stage hitting the audience with ‘Press Restart.’ The song, while energetic, is a bit more subdued, almost like the lads knew the audience would need a warm-up before the ecstatic jumping and dancing. The lighter sound was turned on its head, full forced 80s tinged ‘Portugal’ and ‘Lisa Baby’ bringing that cosmic power that is often affiliated with the band. The party had started, and all we could do was dance along with the insanity.

Rock tinged ‘Kamikaze’ and R+B tinged ‘All I Want’ displayed the true talent of the band; they are not just candy coated gilded pop stars but rather each member of the team has incredible talent that combines together to create sonic perfection. Back to the electronic sound, ‘Shiver Shiver’ and ‘Avalanche’ were clear fan favourites. As the crowd swelled and screamed, Walk the Moon reciprocated dancing feverishly on stage.

Knowing we all needed a bit of a break to slow our heart rates down, the band left the stage and a sort of stripped acoustic version of ‘Aquaman’ streamed. A song about longing, this version was an incredibly emotionally steeped beauty. The tempered moment did not last long, encouraged by the roar of the crowd Walk the Moon launched into ‘Surrender,’ ‘Tightrope,’ and ‘Different Colors’ before hit single “Shut Up and Dance’ threw the crowd and band into a frenzy. In a flash of colours and a flurry of sound the gig reached its zenith, an insane mixture that rivals the best rave.

Flipping the switch monochromatic ‘All Night’ had a broody emotional flush that once again gave a chilled aspect to the set. With an almost heaven inducing ambiance, ‘Tiger Teeth’ continued the lull. ‘One Foot,’ ‘Next in Line,’ and ‘Headphones’ ended the night with a bang it ‘Up 2 U’ and ‘Anna Sun’ concluding the encore.

It is hard to truly describe the joy and excitement that stems throughout a Walk the Moon gig. One enters excited, leaving with a truly infused sense of self that you can only find at this type of show. With the Press Restart Tour, Walk the Moon crafts a brilliant set that is filled with energy and sonic movement, taking fans on an intense journey that ultimately leads to a nirvana state of pure bliss.

Reviewer: Kylie McCormick

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