(Sandy) Alex G - El Club 11/10 Review

In Detroit’s historic Mexico Town, mere minutes from the “Bridge to Canada”, I attended (Sandy) Alex G’s concert at “El Club”. The crowd consisted mainly of aging, millennial hipster couples and edgy, “indie” Detroit-area high schoolers, leaving me in the minority. Nevertheless, I could not contain my excitement having been a fan of Alex G for so long. 

 

Doors opened at seven, and the first opening act, Indigo De Souza, came on at eight. I had never heard of Indigo De Souza, but I was soon blown away by their performance. After an incredible 30-40 minute set, driven by Indigo’s beautiful and raspy vocals, and her band’s punk/indie pop accompaniment, the set I was surprised to enjoy so much ended. 

 

After a short break, the second opener, Tomberlin, took the stage. Her songwriting and vocals were beautiful and somber. She herself introduced her set by saying, “I’m Tomberlin, and I’m here to play some sad bangers”. Much quieter than the previous set, the voices coming from the bar were jarringly obvious, which Tomberlin took great offense to. I personally enjoyed her set less, only due to it not necessarily being my primary taste in music, but it was definitely a touching performance. After another short break, (Sandy) Alex G and his band took the stage. 

Alex began the set with electric performances of the three singles of his new album, House of Sugar: “Gretal”, “Southern Sky”, and “Hope”. The energy in the crowd was unbelievable, screaming lyrics, moshing to songs that, in my humble opinion, are not mosh songs. Regardless, I was having an amazing time. Alex continued without pause, beginning his next song the second his previous song had finished. Within the first portion of his set, Alex played 10/13 of the tracks off House of Sugar, alongside tracks from Rocket, Trick, Beach Music, DSU, and RACE. Every single song sounded perfect, and was performed with such passion and talent. A diverse mix of tracks, Alex G regularly took, and shot down, audience requests (I screamed Serpent is Lord roughly nine times without success). Sandy took his first encore after a chilling rendition of “Sugar House”. Emerging minutes later Alex covered Los Lonely Boys’ “Heaven” in chaotic fashion, and  proceeded to ask for audience requests. He took the request for “Adam” and in between the first and second chorus he briefly covered Blink-182’s “What’s my Age Again?”, for about a minute and then finished the second half of “Adam”. Following the absolutely psychotic rendition of “Icehead”, which sounds nothing like the recorded version, Tomberlin came on stage once again. Together they delivered gorgeous renditions of “Brite Boy” and “Change”.I genuinely believe this was a perfect concert, well worth my money and commute to the Canadian Border. The complete setlist can be found here.

 

-- By Andrew Villeneuve