On Wednesday, October 12th, Marian Hill delivered a highly anticipated performance to a wide-eyed crowd in Webster Hall.
It has been a largely successful year for the unique synth-pop duo, Marian Hill. After releasing their debut album, ACT ONE, they sent independent music bloggers and curators into a frenzy of having to choose from fresh, new material. The synth-pop genre has been growing increasingly popular with the establishment of artists like M83, Banks, and Glass Animals in the mainstream scene, but Marian Hill have singled themselves out by heavily incorporating jazz/R&B elements in their otherwise minimalist electronica tracks. The man responsible for the jazzy vibes and sax riffs, Steve Davit, proved to be an indispensable asset to the duo after fans went crazy for their 2015 EP, Sway, which was packed with sax infused records.
At 9:55pm on Wednesday, October 13th, the energy in Webster Hall was buzzing in the atmosphere as the crowd anxiously waited for production artist, Jeremy Lloyd, and vocalist Samantha Gongol to grace them with their majestic presence. The venue was full to the brim with artificial fog and excited souls who had been waiting for months to see how the duo would bring their jazzy beats to life. A roar of applause emerged from the audience as Lloyd and Gongol took their place on stage – Lloyd behind his keyboard/launchpad and Gongol in the center, microphone in hand. They jumped right in with their most listened to track off their new album, “Down”, and stirred up some major movement in the crowd with the infectious beat drop. After wrapping up their follow-up jam, “One Time”, Lloyd welcomed their fans with an enthusiastic “What’s up New York,” claiming that it was so good to be home.
It was truly awe-inspiring to see how an act still considered to be relatively new has managed to master the art of reading the crowd. Despite the minimalist nature of their tracks, they put on a performance that was nothing short of spectacular. Their visuals consisted of a snazzy backdrop that looked like an enlarged play on their signature ‘MH’ logo on their album, as well as neon lights that flashed in sync with the sultry beats. Their set comprised of the perfect sequence of tracks that alternated between fast paced and slow paced rhythms so as to keep the audience on their toes.
The first half of their set included mainly records from Act One, namely “Wild”, “Bout You”, and “Take Your Time”. Davit joined the duo for “Mistaken” and tore it up on the sax to deliver a groovy solo. After a brief moment of silence, a very familiar loop emitted from the speakers. The intro sequence of “Lips” was enough to inspire a loud whoop from the crowd in celebration of hearing a Marian Hill classic. Nearing the end of their set, they slowed things down with a hypnotic cover of the classic Whitney Houston song, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”. The entire audience swayed in unison to the slow-paced rhythm of the tune and belted out the lyrics along with Gongol. They wrapped up the first portion of their performance with the song that put them on everyone’s radar in 2015, “Got It”. Davit, of course, absolutely murdered the catchy sax riff and inspired a lot of movin’ and groovin’ on the dance floor.
They thanked their fans again for coming out and parted ways with the stage, but the crowd wasn’t done with them yet. Their vibrant cheers echoed off the walls of Webster, demanding more from the band they held so dearly to their hearts. Marian Hill complied with their request and hit them with a killer encore. First “Whisky”, then “Lovit”, and finally a reprise of “One Time” (bangin’ sax solo included).
Check out the setlist below and make sure to give them a listen if you haven’t yet, you will not be disappointed.
Take Your Time
Talk To Me
I Know Why
I Wanna Dance With Somebody Cover
I Want You
One Time Reprise