Los Angeles Indie rock group Silversun Pickups played a dynamic show to a sold-out house at LA’s Wiltern Theatre in a performance that reflected their 20 years of experience. The energy was electric as the house packed full of a community of those who had been devoted to the band for years, even Eliza Klatt, lead singer of opening band Eliza & The Delusionals admitted during her set that she remembers buying Silversun Pickups’ albums in High School. Motivated to show their transformation through the years, the group opened with a bang, starting the night with the upbeat and rock rooted 2019 single “Neon Wound.” Lead singer Brian Aubert started the night off on a high note. His vocals as pure and strong as they were when he had started this band two decades ago made for a great show. The song’s lyrics “You got here right on time.” In the opening verse seemed incredibly appropriate as fans quickly filled what little room there was in the back of the auditorium.
A hometown show always calls for a hometown setlist, and Silversun Pickups brought many of their best songs to the Wiltern that night. “The Royal We,” “Freakazoid,” and “Little Lovers So Polite” all made their way into the performance. However, while solid no setlist is never without a few blind spots. Notably, the band omitted from their performance 2012 piece “The Pit,” one of their most popular songs which have somehow fallen out of their setlist for quite some time.
Bassist Nikki Monninger milked the audience leading into several songs to the audience’s clear approval. Early in the set, before playing their hit “Panic Switch” she broke the silence by repeating the song’s famous bassline before playing the song in full. Later on, in the show, she lead an impromptu “snap-a-long” by snapping her fingers until the audience got the message to do the same. Aubert then exclaimed to the crowd “Don’t fuck this up” while transitioning the snaps into “Don’t Know Yet,” a single from their newest album.
A visual show as much as an auditory one, bright lights behind the band told the story as much as their music. Synchronized perfectly to the enthusiasm of the music complemented the show in a way not many aesthetic complements can accomplish in the way they are intended.
As the night drew to a close, the band gave fair warning that their remaining songs were limited. Monninger’s 15-minute warning the audience came in the form of an acoustic cover of “So Long, Farewell” from The Sound of Music. The band then gave more proper closure to the set as Monninger transitioned from vocals to the smooth bass line that lead into “Growing Old is Getting Old.”
Their encore rounded out their performance, after a short intermission the band returned with replenished energy opening with “Straw Man” and leading into “Well Thought Out Twinkles.” A fan favorite, it came as no surprise that the band ended with “Lazy Eye” which has held strong in that slot of their setlist for as long as many fans can remember.