JAM Magazine Concert Reviews

September 5, 2015
ACL Live at The Moody Theater
Austin, TX USA
Review by Bridget Craig
Photos by Bridget Craig


Bleachers Pluck Through Austin

Early this September, Jack Antonoff brought his new project, Bleachers to Austin to celebrate Pluckers Wing Bar's 20th anniversary. The band debuted in early 2014 with Strange Desire and has made their way through Texas quite a few times, but this was one of my favorites. The ACL Moody Theater was filled all day with Longhorn fans who came to catch the first game of the season and enjoyed free food from Pluckers.

The New York natives opened with a fan favorite "Shadow" and continued to amaze the crowd with "Wild Heart." After I made my way back to the crowd from photographing from the pit I was amazed by the amount of fans actually still in the venue. Not everyone came for Bleachers, but everyone definitely stayed for them and I totally understand why. Antonoff is a man of pure talent. Throughout the years he has been with multiple bands, including the Grammy winning indie pop band fun, and each one gets better and better. Bleachers only has one album, but they kept the show alive. They covered "Go Your Own Way" by Fleetwood Mac and had the whole city singing along.

Typically during live shows the artists slowly build up to the end of the setlist then come back for the final song with full energy. Not in this case. The whole show was as if it was the encore. Antonoff announced each member while in the middle of "You're Still a Mystery" which made me notice the uniqueness of the band. At first it was just that they had two drummers, something that is rarely seen, but everyone played more than one instrument. While the band was being introduced a ladder was brought onstage for a guitar-saxophone face off. This was definitely one of the high points of the show since the crowd was lightly singing the song in the background and eventually built up into the closing.

The show ended with their famous "I Wanna Get Better" and led Antonoff into the crowd. It was truly a show I won't forget. The end seemed like they were only getting started and left us wanting more. Antonoff explained multiple times throughout the show about how Austin helped the band take off because of South by Southwest last year. If you get the chance to catch Bleachers on their next tour I highly recommend it. They have a big future ahead and take control of the stage like no other.