Luscious pop dreamscapes inspired by the 1980s are alive and well with thanks to Canadian quintet Alvvays (pronounced “always”). The group played Union Transfer this past Friday, stirring the welcoming Philadelphia crowd to sway and dance all night. It was an indie-rock triumph of style and substance. Check out photos and highlights below.
1. Alvvays gave us rare, genuine pop rock
Playing songs from their new record, Antisocialites, the band, led by the lyric, vocal and guitar talents of Molly Rankin, was simply stunning. The crowd erupted in a sing-along to “Archie, Marry Me.” And the infectious “Dreams Tonite” filled the venue with energy.
2. Each member of Alvvays adds to the group’s individual sound
Rankin moves about with her swaying blonde hair extending into rhythmic waves. Alec O’Hanley’s guitar work intricately blends with Rankin’s voice. Bassist Brian Murphy, keyboardist Kerri MacLellan and recent addition drummer Sheridan Riley create a refined sound palette.
3. Alvvays delivered a tremendous audio-visual treat
Using projections of their band name, shadows and other simple, yet striking effects, Alvvays displayed a curated visual landscape to match their textured sound.
4. Nap Eyes provided a rousing set of opening rock
Led by Nigel Chapman’s Lou Reed-esque vocals and the exciting guitar artistry of Brad Loughead, Nap Eyes were a worthy warm-up act. With two albums under their belts, they excited an early Philly crowd, undoubtedly winning new local fans.