Concert Review: Grouplove with special guest MUNA

The Thursday (10/27) of Halloween weekend for many college students means getting a head start on a weekend full of dressing up and hitting up the town.

PC: Aidan Crenshaw
PC: Aidan Crenshaw

In my case, I spent one of the nights of this crazy weekend of partying getting “spooky” at Express Live! in Columbus, Ohio with Los Angeles-based indie rock legends Grouplove, along with a newcomer on the indie pop scene, MUNA.

MUNA, an all-female indie pop trio also coming out of Los Angeles, delivered an incredibly energetic set that was surely registered as a crowd favorite.

Big takeaways from their amazing set were the constant presence of dance moves from all the band members jumping up and down and leaping across the stage, an extremely powerful vocal performance from lead singer Katie Gavin and incredible guitar performances by Naomi McPherson and Josette Maskin.

They performed a vast array of their available material, which as of now only consists of The Loudspeaker EP, however, one can only hope that more music is on the way.

The entire crowd, myself included, was very into MUNA’s upbeat electronic sound. If you are looking for a band that you can groove to as well as put on to make you get up and dance (think St. Lucia or the Naked and Famous) look no further.

Through a student organization I am involved with at The Ohio State University, I was incredibly privileged to get to hang out with MUNA, Grouplove’s tour manager, as well as a few members of Grouplove, the night before their show at Express Live!

All the members of the band are incredibly talented musicians and very kind, funny, down to earth human beings.

Forming while college students in Los Angeles, MUNA has made a name for themselves entirely on their own by producing and recording their own music, as well as performing enough shows to become noticed by Grouplove, who asked MUNA on tour within one year of the band’s formation.

McPherson mentioned at first one of the most important ways to get their name out was sending their music to blog after blog, hoping that someone would post about their music, as well as playing small shows around Los Angeles to build a community of fans.

As for Grouplove, all the rumors your friends tell you are completely true.

Their set was an incredible blend of sound, energy, excitement, and color. From a visual aspect, Grouplove was like no other live performance.

The stage backdrop paired with massive flashing lights and the unstoppable energy of the band members kept the crowd engaged in their performance. It is without any exaggeration when I say that I did not see one moment where the members of Grouplove (Especially vocalist Hannah Hooper) were not jumping up and down going crazy.

Musically, the energy started right at the beginning as the band stormed out to A$AP Ferg’s “New Level.”

The band’s set consisted of all the fan favorites such as “Itchin on a Photograph,” “Tongue Tied” and “Ways to Go,” as well as many other selections from each of their three albums, making sure to highlight the band’s latest release Big Mess.

My personal favorite moment of the show was the insane cover of “Sabotage” by the Beastie Boys which had the entire room going absolutely haywire.

To sum it all up, all I can really say is you can listen to MUNA and Grouplove all day, and I recommend you do so for both bands, but at the end of the day, all you can really do to understand the talent and energy both of these bands possess is to go to one of their shows and take it all in.

Trust me, you won’t regret it.

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