The Posies Treat Austin To Secret “Pop-Up” Performance (SHOW REVIEW)

You have to give it to Ken Stringfellow and Jon Auer. Instead of grinding the 90’s nostalgia circuit with their band The Posies, they have figured out a smart way to play shows for the fans that really want to see them. With the upcoming release of their 8th LP Solid States, their first in over six years, The Posies have embarked on a U.S. tour – also their first in six years – consisting of intimate “pop-up” shows with secret locations only announced the day before. The obvious benefit is that the band controls all of the ticketing while the fans get treated to a more personal concert experience. There are also downsides to this, as the group of fans at their Austin performance found out on Wednesday night.

For starters, the show was held in a high-end cocktail bar. Even though there was a stage, the layout was awkward and perhaps better suited for a DJ or a background jazz act. The atmosphere, while nice, felt a bit too classy for the band. The DIY nature of this tour meant that Stringfellow and Auer were handling their own sound from the stage. Jokingly, Stringfellow referred to the gig as a “class-terfuck” when the group took the stage. That being said, the new songs off Solid States worked well alongside older material like “Dream All Day”, “Burn & Shine” and “Solar Sister”. Those old favorites had the crowd dancing and singing along as they reveled in the nostalgia of The Posies’ power pop meets alt-rock sound. New songs like “We R Power”, “Unlikely Places”, “Squirrel Vs. Snake”, “March Climes” and “Titanic” found the band modernizing their sound as they take things in a direction more in favor of the pop over the power. Some of these songs are almost too cheesy, yet even with major vocal issues it was hard not to tap along to their catchiness.

In the shitty reality that is today’s musical landscape, it almost feels empowering to see a band that has been in the game for so long take matters into their own hands and book the kind of tour they want to book. It would have been nice if they had played a real venue with better sound, but it was also nice to see a band taking such a humble approach to connecting with their fans. Technically speaking, Wednesday’s show may have been lacking, yet if there was one takeaway it’s that more bands should take a Posies approach to touring.

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