For those of you who know the touristy part of Toronto well, you would’ve noticed that there are many musical events happening at Dundas Square all the time. Last Thursday, I was lucky enough to be strolling down the downtown core with some friends, when we decided to check out the band playing that night and see why there were bright orange PublicMobile banners all over the area.
The crowd was decent, the stage was set up nicely, and not to mention the five charming men in matching leather jackets on stage, talking about how happy they were to be playing in Toronto. It wasn’t until they began to play did I recognize who they were. Capital Cities. Yes, the Los Angeles-based indie-electro band that is currently on fire with their hit single ‘Safe and Sound’. This very band was playing a free concert for the Siren Music Fest hosted by PublicMobile (the concert opened with Cody Simpson, but that is irrelevant) on August 29.
Very rarely do I say this, but Capital Cities is one of the few bands that sound better live than they do recorded. The lead voices of Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian melted beautifully with each other; they fed off each other’s energy which gave the crowd every reason to enjoy the show.
But the concert wouldn’t have been half as good as it was if it weren’t for their live band exploding the right amount of breezy bass, fresh synths, and, of course, their signature jazzy trumpet sound. In fact, Spencer Ludwig (trumpeter) won MVP that night in Toronto. Their electric feel truly came to life when that trumpet lifted towards the sky and the fireworks of musical brilliance quite simply ignited the crowd.
As a free show, many people who are not fans of the band came out to see what all the young hip noise is about, and never have I ever encountered such a crowd genuinely enjoying the music. My eye caught the various “lost in the moment” dancers, the “I can’t stay still” hip-swayers, and even the occasional air guitar champion.
For the most part, Capital Cities entertained the crowd with songs from their debut album In a Tidal Wave of Mystery, and they even threw in a couple covers. But the show stopper was without a doubt the radio hit ‘Safe and Sound’. As if the party wasn’t hyped enough, the members dropped down from the stage and danced with their fans throughout the show.
One thing became certain that night – Capital Cities give it their all during their live shows and that is clearly reflected in their energy and inevitably the fans. It is highly recommended that you see this band live, and, if not, you can at least imagine what they sound like in concert while listening to their albums.
For more on Capital Cities, visit capitalcitiesmusic.com.