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Two Door Cinema Club rocked the Riviera Theatre

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Two Door Cinema Club rocked the Riviera Theatre

Two Door Cinema Club plays at a previous Lollapalooza concert.

Two Door Cinema Club plays at a previous Lollapalooza concert.

Source: MCTdirect

Two Door Cinema Club plays at a previous Lollapalooza concert.

Source: MCTdirect

Source: MCTdirect

Two Door Cinema Club plays at a previous Lollapalooza concert.

Aditi Bhandari, Blogger

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On Oct. 19, after four years of fangirling and three months of hoping and wishing for tickets that were already sold out, I finally got to watch Two Door Cinema Club perform live at the Riviera Theatre in Chicago. I honestly think that it was the closest to a spiritual experience that I have ever had in my entire life.

I mean, let’s face it: You know a show is going to be great when there are signs plastered all over the entrance saying “Strobe lights will be used ‘extensively’ in the show.”

Having reached the theater at 6 p.m., we still had a good hour and a half until the opening acts took the stage. You’d think that the majority of the crowd would be “20-something hipster folk in dark clothes, glasses and short hair” as the 20-something hipster guy standing next to me (in dark clothes, glasses and short hair) put it. But no! The largest demographics that I saw represented were 12-year-olds, out for what was probably their first concert, and their bemused parents who didn’t quite know what to make of anything.

Finally, bathed in maroon light, St. Lucia took to the stage at as the first opening act. St. Lucia is the stage name of South-African-born Jean-Philip Grobler, who now works in Brooklyn. Performing alongside a touring guitarist and drummer, St. Lucia churned out song after song from his latest album “When The Night” and two of his previous EPs in a thrilling 30-minute set. Honestly, since this was a band I was less familiar with, I wasn’t able to identify any of the songs he played, but I did buy his album as soon as the concert was over and highly recommend you do the same. He sounds like somewhat of a cross between The Kooks and Two Door Cinema Club themselves, and I honestly thought he was British until I found out otherwise.

After a half-an-hour wait came a band that really was British: Peace. I’d say that Peace is easily a Vampire Weekend meets Saint-Motel just because the band’s kind of exuberant electro-pop is perfect for the neon lights and hand-clapping that accompany it. Though they’re fairly young, they clearly knew how to get the crowd on their feet, calling on them to chant the refrains of their songs. Even when playing their latest single, the lead singer screamed, “Wanna do something crazy? Let’s F—ING JUMP!” and even though he proceeded to dance like a dad at prom, the crowd jumped away and continued to do so for the most part of their set list. After an explosive finish, the front stage was cleared within minutes as fans eagerly waited the rising of the black curtain that kept the main stage shrouded in mystery. The stage was bordered with pillars of light and the hall was abuzz with the leftover energy that the opening acts had generated. A playlist consisting of a curious mix of songs from every genre imaginable blared through the speakers, and I found that the sign of a truly monumental song is when the entire crowd, regardless of age, gender or ethnic origin, sings along.

“What is love?”

“BABY DON’T HURT ME, DON’T HURT ME, NO MORE!”

The curtain finally rose at 9:39 p.m., and dry ice filled the stage as hordes rushed back to the hall from the merchandise stalls. At 9:45 p.m., the fans welcomed the band with a deafening road as the lights streamed from behind the stage. We all knew this was what they had meant by extensive.

TDCC went straight into “Sleep Alone,” followed by “Undercover Martyn” without a second of hesitation. Not a single person was left standing still, and it was clear that this was what everyone had been waiting for all night. Lead singer Alex Trimble alternated between the keyboard and the guitar for “Do You Want It All,” grinning uncontrollably as the crowd sung along to “This Is The Life” with complete affirmation. Trimble also said he missed the energy of Lollapalooza, which the band played  this year, before singing one of the most upbeat breakup songs ever written. “Changing Of The Seasons” was released just two months ago and is the first single from the band’s upcoming EP. By the time the group played “Wake Up,” even those in the seated area were dancing in the aisles.

As soon as the time-warpy half-a-minute-long intro to “Come Back Home” started playing on the speakers, the entire audience started clapping rapidly to the beat until the guitar riff kicked in. I’d say that out of the entire concert experience, this was my second favorite part of the show just because this was the first song I heard of theirs in 2009. (It was also the first time I ever used the words “electro-pop ecstasy” to describe a band.) But my absolute favorite part was when Trimble sat down at the keyboard just after the end of “Come Back Home.” Even before he started playing, my heart just screamed, “You have to play ‘Sun’ RIGHT AT THIS VERY INSTANT!” and guess what? Yes, yellow lights flooded the stage, I punched the air (and almost hit the woman next to me), but they played the introductory chords of my absolute favorite song ever, and in that moment I swear everything was perfect. They followed it up with “The World Is Watching,” originally recorded featuring additional vocals by Valentina. At this point, Alex Trimble said  the crowd had a beautiful voice, and I don’t know about everyone else, but I took it as a personal compliment. Naturally, the decibel levels rose even further when he angled the mic during “Something Good Can Work” toward the audience members, who yelled back with everything they had.

The Two Door Cinema band members also proved themselves to be absolute teases by playing a heavily slowed down guitar intro that only sped up to form “Next Year” once the audience realized what was coming. They ended with “Handshake” and “Eat That Up, It’s Good For You.” With its absolutely electrifying guitar solo, it seemed like the perfect way to end the night.

OR WAS IT?!

NO, IT WASN’T!

Even though I bet everyone who was there that night said something along the lines of this, can I just be the first person to type HOLY GOD DAT ENCORE! When a five-minute standing ovation turns into a three-song follow-up, it shows the kind of dedication TDCC fans have and how appreciative the artists are of this. The night really truly ended with “Someday,” “Come Back Home” and “What You Know.” And the crowd sang along. And everything was perfect.

— Aditi Bhandari

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