Los Campesinos! – Echoplex, Los Angeles 11/6/18

Los Angeles’ Echoplex hosted Los Campesinos! on Tuesday night for the 10th Anniversary Tour of not one, but two albums. 2008 saw them release Hold On Now, Youngster and We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed. Cementing their position at the forefront of introspective indie pop. Personally, this was also the 10thAnniversary of my introduction to Los Campinisos! On a sunny Saturday afternoon at the Glastonbury festival, they were one of the first bands to take to The Other Stage. Infectious is fast becoming an overused word in music, but there is no better word to describe that 2008 performance. As they transformed a hung over crowd that had barely emerged from their tents to a joyous, dancing throng.

The subsequent decade has done nothing to diminish Los Campesionos!’ disarming charm and energy or the love and appreciation of their fan base. The front of the stage was already packed deep for a charismatic, animated and engaging support set by Los Angeles’ own Illuminati Hotties. By the time Los Campesinos! kicked off their set with Ways To Make It Through The Wall, it was evident there were no neutrals in the house. Moving into I Broke Up in Amarante from their last album Sick Scenes, it was comforting to discover this aluminum anniversary wasn’t going to confine its setlist to those first two albums. After a raucous Death To Los Campesinos! Gareth addressed the crowd on this Mid-Term Election night:

“I know things aren’t great. But hey, it could be a lot worse. This is catharsis, let’s just enjoy ourselves tonight”

However, this crowd needed little encouragement as they sang and danced their way through this extensive setlist that encompassed their full body of work.

After apologizing for the slow number of The Fall Of Home. Gareth told us not to worry. “It’s all bangers from here on out” he declared. Launching into Baby I Got The Death Rattle. After the full band, cymbal-crashing crescendo of We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed and My Year In Lists, they thanked everybody that helped make this tour happen individually and earnestly. Signing off with Coda, they left the stage briefly before returning for an encore. Checking how long they had left with the sound desk, Los Campesinos! were determined to squeeze every last drop from both the night and the crowd.

“We’ll do three” Gareth said. The final trifecta comprising of Hello Sadness, the blistering You, Me, Dancing and an amp standing finale of Hello Sadness. As this blissful and exuberant gig came to end, the announcement of “We’ll be at the Merch table afterwards if you want to come and say hello”  told us all that Los Campesinos! weren’t going to let the curfew bring the curtain down on their night in Los Angeles just yet…

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