To experience Oh Wonder live, is to fall in love with Oh Wonder. The London based duo’s US Ultralife tour is coming to an end, but their energy doesn’t seem to be dwindling any time soon. Their enthusiasm is infectious, electric.
The Shrine Expo Hall went dark, the crowd’s cheering was thunderous as Josephine and Anthony took the stage as silhouettes. The lights came up and the whole place collectively lost their minds as the band started their set with “Dazzle”. Josephine beamed out at the crowd, taken aback by the equally electric enthusiasm the crowd reciprocated at the duo’s biggest show to date.
The band is about two years old and they’ve played LA once before. A smaller, intimate show at The Troubadour. Between songs, Josephine and Anthony have an air of, just chatting with friends. When Josephine inquired as to how many in the crowd were in attendance that night at The Troubadour, it sounded like roughly half of them erupted in cheers.
The evening was punctuated throughout with graciousness. As Josephine reminisced on that night at The Troubadour, she told the crowd, “I didn’t think it could get any better than that, and somehow it has”.
Oh Wonder’s music isn’t necessarily what comes to mind when you think of “dance” music. Their catchy alt-pop tunes do have a certain bouncy groove to them, and the entire crowd danced with abandon. This was not the casual head bobbing, half two-step one typically witnesses at concerts. This was all out spinning and jumping, grooving and frolicking with absolute bonafide abandon. And it was amazing.
Midway through their set, they asked the crowd, “Are you ready to lose it?” before going into that track. And lose it they did. The crowd was just about as fascinating to watch as the band was.
There was an absolute sort of give and take of energy, the band poured it into the crowd, and the crowd poured it right back into the band, and that feeling never wavered all night. Such a rare alchemy to witness, but it is absolutely the best kind of experience an artist can offer an audience. There was no question Josephine and Anthony were having the time of their lives, and the crowd was, too.
Photos: Angel Melanson
OH WONDER SETLIST:
High on Humans
All We Do
Body Gold / The Rain