New Politics made their way back to Houston once again, and after almost two years, finally took an indoor stage at the House of Blues. The Danish trio, well, duo with a wonderful drummer from Brooklyn, are no strangers to the Houston music scene. They have played Buzzfest countless times so their tours usually never stop in our neck of the woods. Tuesday night was an exception thanks to The Wilderness Politics tour presented by Journeys, which included performances from Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, New Politics, The Griswolds and LOLO.
Brooklyn native LOLO took the stage first and if her name doesn’t sound familiar, it should because LOLO was the amazing addition to Panic! At The Disco’s 2013 hit, “Miss Jackson.”
LOLO’s beautiful, smooth vocals captured the small crowd immediately who in no time started swaying and cheering along. Her short 5-song set helped the crowd get into the concert groove and ready for the next act.
The Griswolds took the stage next, and while their set felt a bit rushed, (understandable since according to their merch guy Jay, the band had van troubles on their way into town) the band always manages to have crowds hanging off their every word. Even though they only played six songs, The Griswolds stuck to tracks from their full-length album Be Impressive but managed to sneak in “Heart of a Lion” from their 2014 EP by the same name.
Next on the lineup were the much anticipated co-headliners of the tour, New Politics. They started out their set with “Everywhere I Go (Kings & Queens)” from their latest release, Vikings, and smoothly transitioned into “Give Me Hope” and “Tonight You’re Perfect” from their 2013 album, A Bad Girl In Harlem.
The band mixed songs from both albums and threw in a couple oldies from their self-titled debut release including “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah,” and my personal favorite, the punk-styled track, “Just Like Me.”
New Politics frontman David Boyd is best known for his incredible dance moves, which flow perfectly with the band’s sound. Throughout their set, Boyd shows off his dancing skills along with his vocals, showcasing his range while always keeping the crowd on their toes.
Guitarist and vocalist Søren Hansen had the chance to show off his incredible, soothing vocals as well when the band slowed it down for their track “Overcome,” then once more when he was left on stage with only a microphone and piano during “Stardust.”
New Politics closed out their set with their hit, “Harlem,” but not before Boyd took to the crowd with their song “Fall Into These Arms” where he trusts the audience to catch him after falling back into them.
Andrew McMahon took the stage next with a mixture of songs from his entire discography, including his time as Jack’s Mannequin and Something Corporate. McMahon had the entire crowd in an emotional whirlwind, myself included, when he played one of my all-time favorite songs from my teenage years, Something Corporate’s “Punk Rock Princess.”
About halfway through his 16-song set, Andrew spoke about the wonderful people he brought along on tour. The Love Hope Strength Foundation recruits concert-goers so sign up for the bone marrow registry, which almost 10-years ago saved Andrew’s life. During this speech, someone in the crowd surprised Andrew and told him that they were part of the process of his transplant which had the entire crowd on the verge of tears and Andrew himself at a lost for words.
At the end of the set, everyone in the venue took a trip back to elementary school as Andrew introduced a rainbow colored parachute to the crowd, who were ecstatic with nostalgia during the last song, “Synesthesia.”
While definitely an odd lineup when you first hear it, the Wilderness Politics tour was an incredible experience bringing together two of my favorite bands and drawing an incredibly passionate crowd on a Tuesday night.
By Norma Becerra