Grizzly Bear and Spoon: Indie Rock Icons at PNC Pavillion
Strap on your safety belts, Cincinnatians, a big one is comin’ atcha: Indie darlings Spoon and Grizzly Bear will be performing at PNC Pavilion on June 25th as part of their 8 stop co-headlining tour, featuring special guest Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith. They have teamed up in support of Everytown for Gun Safety, an organization focused on ending gun violence and developing safer communities, with one dollar of each ticket sold going toward the cause.
Opening support will be provided by Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, an electronic composer based out of Los Angeles. Intending to make her way as a vocalist and classical pianist, Smith changed her path after borrowing a vintage Buchla 100 modular synthesizer from a neighbor and becoming enamored with the capabilities of electronic music. After making this discovery, Smith gave up her indie-folk roots to pursue electronic composition, releasing a string of albums culminating in 2016’s Ears, which was listed at #29 on Pitchfork’s 50 Best Albums of 2016 list. Ears was followed by The Kid in 2017 which received equal acclaim, ultimately receiving nods from Spin, NME, and Bandcamp as one of the best records of the year.
Through the use of various synthesizers combined with heavily effected vocals, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith creates lush soundscapes evoking images of nature that land somewhere between the chaos of Aphex Twin and Dan Deacon, and the peace of Brian Eno’s ambient work. Although she performs alone, her mastery of electronic music allows her to create a captivating wall of sound which will make audience members experience a full range of emotions, from somber reflection to joyous dancing.
Originally a moniker for the solo work of lead singer Edward Droste, Grizzly Bear rose to prominence after the addition of drummer Christopher Bear and multi-instrumentalists Chris Taylor, and Daniel Rossen. The quartet skyrocketed to indie fame with the release of 2006’s intensely personal Yellow House, an album beloved by critics and fans alike. They have continued to build on their original sound with each subsequent release, ultimately reaching mainstream success with their album Veckatimest, featuring the hit single “Two Weeks.” They are now touring in support of their critically acclaimed 2017 release, Painted Ruins, which marks a noticeable change from previous releases, including the heavy use of synthesizers layered into their iconic art-pop sound.
Grizzly Bear does an impeccable job of recreating the nuanced sounds of their albums in a live setting, despite the intense level of detail present in these recordings. It is impossible not to get lost in the soaring melodies, four-part harmonies, and the abundance of moving parts present. No matter the size of the venue, it feels as if they are playing their music just for you.
Spoon was formed in 1993 by frontman Britt Daniel and drummer Jim Eno in Austin, Texas. Although they struggled with label issues through the ‘90s, they reached prominence upon signing with Merge Records and releasing their albums Girls Can Tell (2001), Kill the Moonlight (2002), and Gimme Fiction (2005). Their albums have continued to be acclaimed by critics for their innovative sound, which combines gritty indie rock with a strong pop sensibility. This sound has continued to evolve over the years through their growth as a band and the addition of Rob Pope (bass) and Alex Fischel (keyboards and guitar). This evolution is most apparent on their newest release, Hot Thoughts, which combines their catchy rock hooks with modern pop production and electronic tones that satisfy new and old listeners alike.
Despite having been playing live for 25 years, Spoon still displays an energy and excitement befitting of the modern rock legends. They have been touring consistently through lineup changes and changes in musical direction, and continue to sell out shows across the world, for good reason. Whether you are seeing them for the 1st time or the 5th time, you will be glad you went.
Don’t miss out on seeing these three incredible acts at the PNC Pavilion and supporting Everytown. If you absolutely can’t make it, then at least do yourself a favor and listen to their music and consider donating at everytown.org.
When: Monday, June 25th at 7:00pm Where: PNC Pavilion at Riverbend How much: $21.50-$55.50