Methyl Ethel kicked things off with a hazy, moody set at the Metro on the cold Thursday night. The Australian quartet warmed things up with a mix up jangly pop tunes and dark synth tunes under the deep purple and orange hues of the stage lights. Singer Jake Webb was mostly shrouded in darkness, only emerging for a few moments at a time, while bassist Thom Stewart stood center stage, bringing some serious low end with deep, funky bass lines. After a fairly short set, the 80’s synth pop sensibilities continued on with the highly anticipated headliner of the evening.
“You may not know this, but we’re The Drums.”
Frontman Jonny Pierce’s cheeky statement was met with plenty of laughs and cheers in the crowd. Fans of The Drums are actually a polite, but passionate bunch that were eagerly waiting for them to take the stage. Pierce happens to also be a down to earth, relatable guy which really shows with his honest lyrics and way of interacting with the fans. In fact, a poll was posted on the Facebook event page before the show so that anyone attending could pick the songs they were most excited to hear.
They opened the set with some newer tracks like “Heart Basel” with Pierce begging, “Please call and tell me that you love me.” He then sauntered around in his black and orange “Abysmal Thoughts” jumpsuit with a quiet confidence, commanding the audience in such an earnest way. Pierce continued to sway and swirl his arms hypnotically, occasionally aiming the mic toward the crowd to have everyone sing along.
Half way through the show, Pierce, a vocal advocate for LGBTQ rights, gave an inspirational speech about the importance of being yourself. Having endured an extremely fundamentalist Christian upbringing (including gay conversion therapy), he began creating his own music on his father’s analogue synthesizer that was previously used during church services. After making an abrupt move to New York, Pierce not only grew as a musician, but came to terms with many of his childhood struggles. The culmination of his experiences makes him particularly passionate about encouraging others to also fully embrace who they are. His words that night were a beautiful and welcome sentiment that resonated with everyone, creating a welcoming and enjoyable environment.
They continued on playing fan favorites such as “Blood Under My Belt” and “Best Friend” that got everyone singing along once again. It was a super fun show; it almost felt like you were dancing with your best friend in your bedroom to all your favorite songs. It was truly an inclusive, positive experience that let everyone fully express themselves for a moment without a care in the world. A moment that The Drums were undoubtedly honored to give everyone that night.