August 16, 2018
Pedro the Lion played Music Hall of Williamsburg
The classic indie band of the late nineties and early aughts came to Brooklyn and brought with them a plethora of hits to win over fans.
"I used to play shows under just my name, but y'all didn't really come to those." David Bazan was a true open book on the Brooklyn stop of this Pedro the Lion reunion tour. Over the course of the night, Dave went on some tangents that went in depth on his struggles as a recording artist and made a true case for supporting bands by showing up to shows and buying physical music, but all of his banter was fully supported by a night full of classic hits. Backed by a guitar and drums, Bazan spent the night tearing into jams that evoked such fond memories and feelings of the past and it was inspiring to gaze around the room and realize the impact these songs were having on the audience. Bobbing heads and hunched shoulders made up the majority of those in attendance and the impact of these tracks was felt around the venue. From the opening of "Indian Summer," it was clear that this would be a special night full of tugged heart strings and thunderous crescendos. Ranging from a post-Seattle style of indie rock (something that resembles a late-90s grunge and alt-rock hybrid) to a brilliant slowcore build-up and release, the band seemed to operate seamlessly and powered through their set with very little breaks or interruptions. When he did break between songs, Bazan appeared forever grateful to his crew and the venue for supporting him, no doubt in direct correlation to the fact that Bazan has been operating under a true DIY mode for several years. It was a night that felt pure and honest, one where the boundary between performer and fan seemed to be close to non-existent, and a time when Bazan left himself completely vulnerable onstage. His songs were momentous and carried significant weight, best highlighted on the more post-rock inspired numbers where tempos dropped and moods felt a bit more subdued. Rhythms were tight throughout the night, however, and while Bazan admitted that some songs just didn't feel right to perform, it was still a night of excitement and masterful execution. It was clear that for those in attendance, these were songs of real importance and hearing them performed so well was a real treat. Leaving everything on stage, it was clear too that this was not just a cash grab, but something that had meaning to Bazan as well. A show that brought the artist just a bit closer to fans, while still maintaining a deserved level of success.