This past Saturday night the indie rock band Silversun Pickups put on a benefit concert at the Ace Theatre in downtown Los Angeles. With 100% of the proceeds going directly to the Hispanic Federation’s “Unidos” fund for Hurricane Maria relief in Puerto Rico, the foursome hailing out of Los Angeles packed the venue for a night of giving and not forgetting.
Outfitted with a gothic flair and severe attention to detail, the Theatre at the Ace Hotel is one of the most mesmerizing theaters in Los Angeles. Concert-goers could be seen gazing around the 1,600-capacity theatre in sheer awe, lost in what looked like a daydream of sorts.
Right at 9:15 PM a quiet lull of a track started playing in the background. Most people didn’t pick up on it but for those who did they knew it was a melodic rendition of Silversun’s “Cradle (Better Nature)” track. Quickly after the song ended, lead singer Brian Aubert (guitar/lead vocalist), Christopher Guanlao (drums), Joe Lester (keys), and Nikki Monninger (bass) emerged from the stage left wing. With a cheeky smile, Aubert said hello to the audience, motioned for them to all rise out of their seats, and quickly went into the band’s opening number, “Nightlight”.
The band’s lighting was candy-colored. Pinks, greens, reds, and warm blues flooded the theatre’s floor and ceiling. “Well Thought Out Twinkles” and “The Royal We” were the next track’s played with the latter stirring the audience up into a frenzy. People that were once dry were now wet with sweat and pure excitement.
As the night drew on, the band played a multitude of songs from their four-album discography. About halfway through the evening, Aubert stopped the music to offer his two cents on the reason why the theater was filled – Puerto Rico. He addressed the issue of the rising need for more supplies to PR, a better infrastructure for both Puerto Rico and the US’ reaction to such a devastating issue. He didn’t go after Trump but you could clearly see a burning desire in his eyes for the President to step down. Before he returned to his guitar, Aubert again thanked the fans graciously for their love and devoted to his band as well as Puerto Rico.
“Panic Switch” returned the audience to a more energized, less somber mood. “Lazy Eye”, one of the band’s most coveted tracks closed the night out, or so it would seem. Amidst a thunderous applaud and a craving for the four-piece to return to the stage, Silversun Pickups walked back onto the stage for a three-song encore with the tracks “Cannibal”, “Dots and Dashes (Enough Already)” and “Kissing Families”.
In all, the night was a beaut – the fans were engaged and the band was receptive. The venue was mystical and the cause of the show was dear and true. If you’d like to donate UNIDOS: A Hurricane Relief Fund for Hurricane Maria victims in Puerto Rico, click HERE!
Silversun Pickups Setlist:
Cradle (Better Nature)
Well Thought Out Twinkles
The Royal We
Circadian Rhythm (Last Dance)
Little Lover’s So Polite
Dots and Dashes (Enough Already)