Headlights – Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia Pa.

To preface, let me just say that I’ve never met a dance party I didn’t like, so when the opportunity to see Headlights live, touring their latest release, presented itself, I was stoked. And while I hate to use stock photos for a concert review (instead, check out the video for “Cherry Tulips” below) I was happy to dance my way through Headlights’ set rather than worry about getting a good shot off — taking notes was enough of a challenge while shakin’ it on Johnny Brenda’s balcony.


The trio, which is actually a five-some for the duration of the tour, started off a high energy set with a sound check that was as fun to watch from above as it seemed to be for the band, whom were joking amongst themselves and with the venue’s sound guy. The balcony was crowded, with audience members hanging over the edge in anticipation as Erin, Tristan, Brett, Nick, and John prepared for their set. Tristan kicked off a high-energy set with a long instrumental introduction to “Get Your Head Around It.”

While I’ve seen it take an audience half a set to really get into a band, the crowd at Johnny Brenda’s were all bouncing along, if not outright dancing, to Headlights by “Centuries” off of 2005’s The Enemy EP. It was at this point that I thought to myself that while Johnny Brenda’s is a great place, Headlights more than deserves to sell out venues five times its size. The energy coming from the five on stage more than proved it’s only a matter of time before that happens. From my perch on the balcony, I was mesmerized by Erin’s fingers gliding meticulously yet feverishly across the keyboards while Brett’s drumming just really blew me away and Tristan made playing the guitar look way too easy.

The entire set, from start to finish, was simply amazing. Make it your business to check out Headlights as they tour from now through the beginning of April (see dates below). Undoubtedly one of the top shows of 2008.

Setlist: Get Your Head Around It;Market Girl; Centuries; Towers; School Boys; So Much For The Afternoon; Some Racing, Some Stopping; Catch Them All; Cherry Tulips; Owl Eyes

Tour Dates:

02/26 Hamden , CT @ The Space*
02/27 Boston , MA @ Mideast Club*
02/28 Princeton , NJ @ Terrace Club*
02/29 Brooklyn , NY @ Union Hall*
03/01 Buffalo , NY @ Mohawk Place*
03/02 Toronto, Ontario , CAN*
03/03 Cleveland , OH @ Beachland Tavern*
03/04 Bloomington , IN @ Waldron Arts*
03/06 Urbana , IL @ Canopy Club*
03/07 Chicago , IL @ Schubas*
03/08 St. Louis , MO @ Billikin Club*
03/09 Springfield , MO @ Randy Bacon*
03/10 Norman , OK @ Opolis*
03/11 Dallas , TX @ The Cavern*
03/12 Austin , TX @ Force Field Day Party
03/12 Austin , TX @ Tuscon Scene / A Fine Tooth Day Party
@ Beso Cantina
03/13 Austin , TX @ DAG Presents & Tangled Snark Productions Party
@ The Hole in the Wall
03/14 Austin , TX @ Polyvinyl/Team Love SXSW Showcase
@ Habana Calle
03/15 Austin , TX @ Impose Magazine & KVRX Day Party
@ Communications Courtyard U of T.
03/17 Tucson , AZ @ Plush*
03/19 Los Angeles , CA @ Silverlake Lounge*
03/20 Visalia , CA @ Howie and Sons*
03/21 San Francisco , CA @ Hemlock Tavern*
03/22 Portland , OR @ Towne Lounge*
03/23 Seattle , WA @ Nectar’s*
03/24 Missoula , MT @ The Badlander*
03/26 Salt Lake City , UT @ Kilby Ct.*
03/27 Denver , CO @ Hi-Dive*
03/28 Omaha , NE @ Waiting Room*
03/29 Minneapolis , MN @ Nomad World Pub *
03/30 Milwaukee , WI @ Cactus Club *
03/31 Dekalb , IL @ The House Cafe*
04/01 Rock Island , IL @ Huckelberry’s Pizza*
04/02 Madison , WI @ High Noon Saloon*
04/03 Iowa City , IA @ The Mill (Mission Creek Music Festival)*
04/04 Lake Forest , IL @ The Chapel*
04/05 Beloit , WI @ C-Haus*

*with Evangelicals

[where: 1201 N. Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125]

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