You can almost feel the pull, like the power of a 10,000-ton train, moving the very Irish band Fontaines DC from the smaller clubs of just a handful of years ago to selling out big venues like the 9:30 Club Thursday night. And to top it off, the eve of the release of the quintet’s third full-length LP, Skinty Fia, saw the band not only selling out the 9:30 Club but also venues throughout the United States.
Fontaines D.C. is a force at the Rock and Roll Hotel on May 11, 2019. (Photo by David LaMason)
Fontaines D.C., the Dublin-based (the D.C. in the name reflects Dublin City) band melds poetry and punk — a sense of immediacy with hooks that are hard to shake. Grian Chatten, frontman of the group, sang/spoke in what can feel like a conversation and a call to arms in the same breath at the Rock and Roll Hotel recently.
Sylvan Esso dazzles a packed The Anthem on July 26, 2018. (Photo by David LaMason)
There’s a magic that Amelia Meath (vocals) and Nick Sanborn (producer/sound engineer) create. It’s an infectious feeling generated by Amelia’s compelling voice and energetic dance moves — itself buoyed by the soundscapes formed and molded by Nick’s panel of sounds. Over the past two LPs (2014’s self-titled Sylvan Esso and last year’s What Now), the North Carolina-based Sylvan Esso created beat-soaked tunes that stick in your head. But it’s their live show that’s a force to behold.
On Thursday night at The Anthem, the duo pulled no punches.