Neon Trees – Wiltern, Los Angeles

Concert review by Christy Carter

It’s pitch black in the Wiltern Theatre and suddenly, a flash of electric blue lights up the stage. The anticipation of the 2000+ fans is palpable, the screams begin, and it’s SHOWTIME!!

As far as the Neon Trees go, I was a virgin to their live experience. Although, I heard great things about lead singer Tyler Glenn’s live performance. Needless to say, I definitely had high expectations for this show!

After 20+ years in major market radio, and somewhere around 1,000 shows, I guess I sort of have that “I’ve seen it ALL already” attitude. I freely admit that I’m a pretty tough critic, especially with newer bands. It takes a LOT to WOW me, and to get this cynical chick excited these days.

The show began, and from the first note of the first song, Moving in the Dark (the first track from their first album, Habits), Glenn owned the crowd! Moving into the angst ridden, topical, Teenage Sounds, from 2012’s Picture Show, he commanded the attention of the room, and he surely got it!

Weaving stories and sharing glimpses into his life through his wonderfully personable narrations, Glenn took us on a journey into Sins Of My Youth, and the song about the year of his birth, 1983. It was right around then I heard the first rumblings of the question from the crowd, “Hey! Where’s Elaine Bradley?”

After Mad Love, and Weekend, Tyler answered that question; announcing that Elaine had given birth to a baby boy earlier that morning. Then sharing the endearing (at least to me) thought about how glad he was that he couldn’t be there because if he had been in the delivery room, he certainly would have fainted.

After the energy and frenzy of the first six songs, I think both audience and band were ready for a bit of a rest, and that came in the form of the beautifully performed Your Surrender. Just a man and his keyboard, and what was easily one of my favorite moments of the night. The song was gorgeous, it gave me Goosebumps.

The crowd was soon rockin’ again to tunes like Trust, Lessons In Love, Love and Affection, and In The Next Room. Then came an awesome, audience driven, interactive rendition of Animal. It concluded the set, and absolutely left the crowd wanting more. After another quick wardrobe change, Glenn gave us just that with I am The DJ and the current huge radio hit Everybody Talks.

Tyler Glenn and his Neon Trees absolutely hit it out of the ballpark for me, and obviously everyone else in attendance. This was a pretty huge accomplishment in itself, considering the typically jaded, and seemingly easily bored crowds one usually finds oneself in the midst of at most Hollywood shows. Even with my high expectations, I was not let down. In fact, I was very pleasantly surprised!

Sadly, that was the end of the show, and I was so not ready for that yet. If I had one complaint from the night it was that I wanted MORE, and that’s a pretty great “problem” to walk away with. It was a great night for music at the Wiltern Theatre.

Neon Trees is currently on tour in support of their album Picture Show as wellas other concerts series. Their album is now available in stores and on iTunes among other online outlets.

For more information on Neon Trees go to their website at www.fameisdead.com and their social media pages at FaceBook, and MySpace.

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