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Glass Animals Delight a Sold-Out Bowery Ballroom

July 8th, 2014

Glass Animals – The Bowery Ballroom – July 7, 2014

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Glass Animals, a freshly minted indie-rock group hailing from Oxford, England, hit the United States on their first headlining tour in support of their debut album, Zaba. What began as a solo bedroom project for frontman Dave Bayley blossomed into a full band with the recruitment of some childhood friends. And as summer hits full swing, their jazzy, trip-hop melodies provide the perfect soundtrack for a day at the beach or hanging out on the stoop. Last night as the quartet descended upon the unlit stage of a sold-out Bowery Ballroom, Bayley cried out, “What’s up, New York?”

Beginning the show with material from their self-titled EP, an undercurrent of tenor beats against a bubbling effect introduced “Psylla,” followed by the Afro-jazz toned “Black Mambo,” which had most in the room bobbing their heads to the infectious rhythm. Fan favorite “Exxus” elicited a sing-along of the chorus: “Gone in the blink of my eye.” Moving on from their earlier works, the fresh-faced lads offered “Hazey,” “Flip,” and “Gooey.” Bayley’s ragdoll movements and upraised arms used for exclamation had the lead singer resembling a young Thom Yorke with a rapper’s flair.

Having a great night, Bayley gushed, “You guys are too cool to us,” as his shoeless feet bounced across the stage and his pedals. He encouraged everyone to dance for “Wyrd” and treated the dancers to a slowed-down cover of Kanye West’s “Love Lockdown” before closing the set. After a brief exit, the band returned for an encore of “Pools,” which would be perfect for a day at PS1’s Warm Up. Needless to say, get on this rising band STAT and score your tickets now for their show at Music Hall of Williamsburg at the end of summer. —Sharlene Chiu

(Glass Animals play Music Hall of Williamsburg on 9/15.)